Oil on artist's board, mounted on cradled panel
41 × 32.5 cm (16 1/8 × 12 13/16 in.)
Joseph Winterbotham Collection
1886年，文森特·梵高离开他的祖国荷兰，定居在巴黎，他深爱的哥哥西奥是一名绘画商人。梵高在充满活力的法国首都逗留两年期间，至少创作了24幅自画像。这个早期的例子是适度的大小，是画在准备好的艺术家的董事会，而不是画布。它浓密的涂鸦，成为梵高风格的一个标志，反映了艺术家对乔治·修拉特（Georges Seurat）在1884年拉格朗德·贾特（La Grande Jatte-1884）的一个星期天里革命性的点画技法的反应。但对修拉来说，一种建立在科学冷静客观基础上的方法，在梵高手中变成了一种强烈的情感语言。这幅画的表面有强烈的绿色、蓝色、红色和橙色的颗粒。在这一系列令人眼花缭乱的断断续续的点和破折号中，最引人注目的是艺术家深绿的眼睛和他们凝视的强烈程度。梵高曾给西奥写信说：“比起大教堂，我更喜欢画人们的眼睛。“无论后者多么庄严庄严——一个人的灵魂，无论是一个穷苦的街头小贩的灵魂，对我来说都更有趣。”梵高从巴黎到南部的阿尔勒镇旅行了15个月。1890年去世时，他只积极地追求了五年的艺术。
In 1886 Vincent van Gogh left his native Holland and settled in Paris, where his beloved brother Theo was a dealer in paintings. Van Gogh created at least twenty-four self-portraits during his two-year stay in the energetic French capital. This early example is modest in size and was painted on prepared artist’s board rather than canvas. Its densely dabbed brushwork, which became a hallmark of Van Gogh’s style, reﬂects the artist’s response to Georges Seurat’s revolutionary pointillist technique in A Sunday on La Grande Jatte—1884. But what was for Seurat a method based on the cool objectivity of science became in Van Gogh’s hands an intense emotional language. The surface of the painting dances with particles of color—intense greens, blues, reds, and oranges. Dominating this dazzling array of staccato dots and dashes are the artist’s deep green eyes and the intensity of their gaze. “I prefer painting people’s eyes to cathedrals,” Van Gogh once wrote to Theo. “However solemn and imposing the latter may be—a human soul, be it that of a poor streetwalker, is more interesting to me.” From Paris, Van Gogh traveled to the southern town of Arles for fifteen months. At the time of his death, in 1890, he had actively pursued his art for only five years.