Van Gogh in
Van Gogh in
Vincent’s parents lived in Etten from 1875 to 1882. Vincent often spent holidays with them and lived at their house for seven months in 1881.
In October 1875, the Van Gogh family moved from Zundert to Etten after Mr Van Gogh took up a position as the local parson. Vincent was living abroad at the time and Etten was the home base where he rejoined the family, mainly during holidays such as Christmas and Easter.
He also used Etten as a retreat when he was between jobs and to rethink his plans for the future. In 1877, after his dismissal from Goupil & Cie in Paris, he stayed with his parents before moving to Ramsgate, England. Six months later, after returning from Isleworth, he stayed with them again before moving to Dordrecht. And years later, in 1880, after living under harsh conditions in the Borinage, a Belgian mining region, he came back to Etten to unwind and recharge.
The summer of 1881 was by far the most significant period that Vincent spent in the village. A beginning artist by then, he worked with local models and often went into the surrounding countryside to draw. His friend Anthon van Rappard came to visit and they worked together. Vincent’s cousin Kee Vos also stayed with the family that summer and Vincent fell passionately in love with her. His feelings for Kee were so strong that he proposed a marriage. Her reply – “No, nay, never” – did not faze Vincent. Despite both families’ strong oppositions, he persisted in trying to win Kee’s heart but he never succeeded.
The incident, along with many others, severely strained family relations. And, after an argument with his father at Christmastime, Vincent angrily left Etten for The Hague. He would never return to Etten. In early August of 1882, the Van Gogh family moved to Nuenen, where Mr Van Gogh had been appointed parson.
Richmond, Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, collectie van Mr. en Mvr. Paul Mellon
Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam (Vincent van Gogh Stichting)
Relevant letters from Vincent
No relevant letters found so far.
Evert van Uitert