Vincent van Gogh did not commit suicide

17 October 2011, by

Vincent van Gogh did not commit suicide, according to Steven Naifeh and Gregory White Smith authors of new biography Van Gogh: The Life.

Contrary to popular belief that Van Gogh shot himself in the chest in Auvers-sur-Oise on July 27, 1890, the authors claim that it was more likely that he was fatally wounded by two local boys who had “a malfunctioning gun.”

It was "very clear to us that he did not go into the wheat fields with the intention of shooting himself... The accepted understanding of what happened in Auvers among the people who knew him was that he was killed accidentally by a couple of boys and he decide to protect them by accepting the blame," according to Steven Naifeh.

Van Gogh did not "actively seek death but that when it came to him, or when it presented itself as a possibility, he embraced it," says Gregory White Smith.

Note that Steven Naifeh and Gregory White Smith, who won a Pulitzer Prize for their biography of US artist Jackson Pollock, had the co-operation of the Van Gogh Museum.

van gogh
Self-Portrait with Straw Hat, Paris, Winter 1887/88, Metropolitan Museum of Art

Source: BBC News

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Comments arranged by date (Total 2 comments)  
October 17 2011, 12:38PM

You mean 1890, right? :-)

October 17 2011, 12:42PM

Thank you pnblank!

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