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rue Lepic 54

The building still exists, but is not open to the public.

Van Gogh in


  1. 19 Feb. 1888 1886
     - 19 Feb. 1888 1888

Alphonse Portier (1841–1902) was a Paris dealer who sold works by artists such as Auguste Renoir, Johan Barthold Jongkind, Paul Cézanne and Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec from his apartment at 54 Rue Lepic. In 1885, when Theo showed him a sketch of The Potato Eaters, he was one of the first to respond positively to Vincent’s creations. From then on, Vincent valued Portier’s opinion highly and regularly sent him work. Yet Theo considered it unlikely that Portier would ever help Vincent sell anything. Theo had written to Vincent in June 1885:

“he is perhaps more of an enthusiast than a salesman” Read the complete letter

But Vincent kept faith in Portier. He replied to Theo:

“That he must therefore not lose heart too soon, because you and I combined won’t take it amiss of him should it not succeed for a longer or shorter time, but that he must just go on showing. And that I’ll go on sending.” Read the complete letter

By the autumn of 1885, however, Portier had lost enthusiasm, leaving Vincent frustrated. After he came to live in Paris in 1886, Vincent probably saw and visited the dealer often, as they lived in the same building. He viewed works at Portier’s, including Paul Cézanne’s The Harvest, one of the few landscapes by the painter that Vincent was familiar with at the time.

Seen here

Paul Cézanne, The harvest, ca. 1877

Paul Cézanne, The harvest, ca. 1877

Private collection

    Relevant letters from Vincent

    Continue reading

    1. Nienke Bakker

      Van Gogh en Montmartre
      Amsterdam, 2011
    2. Françoise Cachin en Bogomila Welsh-Ovcharov

      Van Gogh à Paris
      Parijs, 1988
    3. Ella Hendriks en Louis van Tilborgh

      Vincent van Gogh schilderijen, deel 2: Antwerpen en Parijs
      Amsterdam, 2011