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Starry Night

Artists create scenes to please their viewers. Whether they actually experienced these beautiful scenes or just simply imagined them is almost insignificant to the viewers. When you really take a second to look at this painting, you can almost feel the emotions that Van Gogh put into this wonderful masterpiece. That is exactly how I felt when I stumbled upon Vincent van Gogh’s “Starry Night over the Rhône”. He makes you feel like you are there with him sitting on the bank, under the sky, looking across the water at the lovely city of Arles.

“Starry Night over the Rhône” is an utterly breathe taking painting. You can feel the hair on your skin stand on end with the cool, gentle breeze of the Mediterranean air. The breeze brings the sounds of Arles athwart the river; laughter and shouting come at you like tidal waves from the water beneath you. Hearing the sounds of the native people makes you smile and hope like yourself that they are enjoying this lavishly beautiful night. The bright lights twinkling from the city reproduce a mirror image on the wavy dark blue water of the Rhône. Arles shows no signs of sleeping for the night, flames ablaze on the horizon, casting light into the cloudless sky showing all the stars above and beyond. Stars shining like the lights from below, sparkling as if dancing to their own song from above. The stars float in the air as if they were balloons of light, making their way around the world. Two vessels rest peacefully at bay awaiting the morning to come when they will once again be on a journey to the known or unknown seas and oceans. As you listen to the waves crashing against the bank, a strong scent of sweets and spices wafts towards you from across the Rhône.

You take in the scent and look below you at the water. You notice a couple walking up the bank, arm in arm enjoying one another’s company along with the beautiful night; their shadows appear to be creating a slight shadow increasing to the lovely scenery. The horizon blending together as it reaches into the sky creating many shades of blue. Lights flooding the river appear to be creating an alternate sky beneath the physical one. Each brush stroke is carefully placed trying not to ruin the colors and blend them incorrectly. The composition of all of the colors: the blues, reds, oranges, pinks, greens, and yellows all seem to be put together just so cautiously as to not disorder anything.

Every part of the painting; the vessels, the city lights, the night stars, the water, and the couple all make the picture seem just that much more seductive to the eye. Removing any part of van Gogh’s painting would take away the affect and the seduction that many paintings lack. The city would be a plain lite city, the river would just be a river, and the sky would be a sky with stars in it, but altogether they are much more than that. They create scenery that was captured perfectly and will now never be forgotten, that is the reason for what makes this painting so astounding.





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