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English, analysis & interpretation of Van Gogh's night café.

Par   •  27 Mai 2018  •  1 828 Mots (8 Pages)  •  208 Vues

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Colors:

-exaggeration of colors

-blood red walls and alien reds and greens—non-matching, uncomfortable colors—contrast between colors

-dark yellow—bartender=lemon yellow and pale luminous green

-blue and violet people= sorrow and sadness

-p. 288 Night richly coloured than day

-“Everywhere there is clash in contrast of the most alien reds and greens”.

Composition:

-focal point towards door

-chaotic

-no realistic/convincing perspective

Light:

-only true light comes from exit door

-lamps glow greenish and orange—do not seem to light up the room

Colors:

-exaggeration of colors

-blood red walls and alien reds and greens—non-matching, uncomfortable colors—contrast between colors

-dark yellow—bartender=lemon yellow and pale luminous green

-blue and violet people= sorrow and sadness

-p. 288 Night richly coloured than day

-“Everywhere there is clash in contrast of the most alien reds and greens”.

Texture: blurring, thick application of paint=texture makes it surreal, impression of nightmare, big brush strokes

INTERPRETATION (symbolism)

The Night Café is a criticism on the nightlife in cities and what it implies. It strongly speaks out against vice, solitude and poverty and suggests Van Gogh’s madness. Van Gogh illustrates vice by depicting a large quantity of alcoholic beverages. This implies that the Night Café is a place where many alcoholics go in order to drink cheap liquor such as absinthe. This is aspect of the painting is important because it depicts how one can ruin himself in a café. Furthermore, the couple in the back of the room is a clear example of the corruption of the café and thus vice. It is also interesting to note that the bartender seems to not care about the crimes which are being committed in his café. This demonstrates that the owner himself is as guilty as his customers because he turns his back on the vice which occur in his café. Another aspect which Van Gogh comments on his in painting is that of the solitude of the customers who attend the café. Although the half-asleep characters are near each other there is no interaction between them. Furthermore, the room is filled with empty chairs and tables and an unattended pool table. All these depictions of emptiness all serve to emphasize the loneliness and solitude that one may feel in the café. Even the billiard table that is commonly a form of leisure is barren of players, which demonstrates that people do not come to the night café for entertainment, but instead as a refuge from the night. This is a clear illustration of the poverty of the customers of the café which is an important theme of the painting itself. Van Gogh strongly comments on the miserable state of the usual customers of the café who are there to spend the night to avoid sleeping outside. The café itself is illustrated as being quite neglected and filthy. Although the owner is present, most of the tables have not been cleaned and the chairs not placed in their appropriate position. The colors of the room itself suggest discomfort and unattractiveness which makes the café seem more like it is a common gathering place for vagabonds and deprived individuals. The colors and composition of the room itself also illustrates and suggests Van Gogh’s madness. First of all, the crooked perspective is clearly showing that the artist is not using a perspective point, but a perspective area, which is the draped door itself. This gives to the picture an impression of chaos and disorder, which may reflect the artist’s mind and vision of the scene. Also, the colors used are in an uneasy, almost disgusting contrast with each other. An example of such contrast is that of the celery green counter that does not fit with the olive green of the pool table. The nightmarish scene is enhanced by the distorted proportions of the objects in the room; for example, the flower pot is humongous compared to the people and the tables, and the clock is seemingly giant-sized; it looks almost as big as the lamps on the ceiling. Many of the aspects of the painting are so blurry painted that they are beyond any recognition. For instance, the green rectangle behind the couple is perplexing; it is unclear whether it is a mirror, a window or a painting. The very dark spot behind the clock is very confusing also, because its identity is ambiguous; it could be a hole in the wall or a dark spot of paint on the wall. All these aspects, including the dark outside from the window, clearly show Van Gogh’s madness and how he unintentionally depicts them in the Night Café.

-Themes: madness, vice, solitude, crime, poverty

-Devil’s furnace, Hell on Earth

-Solitude: billiard table with one stick, absent from players, lonely man, time (darkness), half-empty and isolated tables, areas of the room

-Vice: prostitutes

CONCLUSION

References

Nataniel Harris wikipedia

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