madness.

by dorarandom

Image

i was just flipping through a Phaidon book about Van Gogh that i bought at some point—presumably because it was on sale—and obviously in order to, you know, look at the pictures—possibly with the intent to tear out the nicest Colour Plates—anyway, i see that i made the mistake of also reading the words in this book, and that the words started to get on my nerves in a big way, because i started to make little marks and exclamation points in the margins. and i really lost my patience with the text accompanying Plate #43:

Van Gogh was able to paint some portraits during his stay in St Rémy. The hospital attendant and his wife both sat for him, which is convincing evidence of his epileptic rather than psychotic condition. Who would leave his wife alone with a madman?…

and wrote in the margin:

  • a madman
  • a man who is not perceptive
  • a man who does not care
  • a man whose wife wants to be left alone with a madman
  • a man who knows that some madmen are entirely harmless
  • a man who has already had his portrait painted by said madman
  • etc.
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