Vincent Van Gogh is one of the most famous Dutch painters in history. His paintings have fetched fortunes at auctions around the world. He came from the small town of Groot Zundert in Holland. His birth followed the death of an older child to replace the grieving parents. Van Gogh’s life was one of artistic genius and periodic nervous breakdowns. Life didn’t go as he planned. Throughout his life he suffered from physical ailments and a lack of success in his artistic production. His art is steeped in symbolism for the emotional truth he represented, but the beauty and impact of his work was not recognized until after his death. We feel the emotions of loneliness and inequality portrayed in his art. It’s a wonder if the struggling artist, who sold few paintings in his lifetime, would be satisfied with the fortune he’s asking for today? Here are the five most expensive Van Gogh paintings ever sold.
5. Irises by Vincent Van Gogh Price: $53.9 million
Irises is the fifth most expensive Van Gogh painting ever sold. Vincent painted this masterpiece as part of a series painted shortly before his death in 1890. It was completed at the Saint Paul de Mausole Asylum where he was being held in Saint Remy de Provence, France. Van Gogh developed a personal liking for irises and painted several works featuring the beautiful flowers. It is widely believed that he was drawn to the flower for its healing properties and symbolism. Van Gogh had many illnesses in his life and it seems natural that he would be drawn to a symbol that offered hope. Van Gogh’s Irises was owned by collector Joan Whitney Payson until her son sold the painting. Alan Bond bought the painting from Sotheby’s New York on November 11, 1987 for $53.9 million, according to the New York Times.
4. Portrait of Joseph Roulin by Vincent Van Gogh Price: $58 million – plus other works in exchange
The Portrait of Joseph Roulin is one of many paintings the artist made for the subject and his family. Vincent was known for his landscape paintings, but he was passionate about painting portraits. He shared his passion with others of his time, who passed on the stories of his true passions throughout the ages. Joseph Roulin lived in Arles, where he earned his living as a postman. The painting was owned by an anonymous private collector in Zurich, Switzerland. The sale of the painting was completed on August 1, 1989 in a private sale to the Museum of Modern Art in New York.
3. A Field of Wheat with Cypresses (London Version) Price: $57 million
A Wheat Field with Cypresses is one of Van Gogh’s most famous works. He drew it from the hospital in Arles, inspired by the view from the back window of his room. Van Gogh was allowed to take short walks outside the asylum and paint in the fresh air. The cypresses around the asylum moved him. He believed that the tree reflected the things he felt inside and he captured his essence in the painting. He loved the finished product and made three more of them. The wheat field with cypresses was sold by Emil Georg Buhrle’s son in May 1993 for $57 million. Walter H. Annenberg acquired it in a private sale. He bought the painting for the Metropolitan Museum of Art, where it is displayed, according to Trip Improver. It was painted at a time when he was recovering from his ailments.
2. Portrait de l’artiste Sans Barbe Price: $71.5 million
Van Gogh’s Portrait de l’artiste Sans Barbe, also known as Self-Portrait Without a Beard, is a self-portrait that Van Gogh painted of himself, with a clean-shaven face. He painted the portrait in oil on canvas in 1889. It is believed to be the artist’s last self-portrait, completed in September 1889. It is arguably one of Vincent Van Gogh’s most famous self-portraits. The last known sale of the painting was on November 19, 1998. It was sold at auction at Christi’s, New York, by Jacques Koefer’s heirs to an anonymous buyer for $71.5 million. Portrait de l’artiste Sans Barbe is the third most expensive Van Gogh painting sold.
1. Portrait of Dr. Gachet Price: $82.5 million
Widewalls confirms that Post-Impressionist artist Vincent Van Gogh’s most expensive painting is his Portrait of Dr. gash is. To fully appreciate its importance and value, one needs to know a few things about its background. dr Gachet was Van Gogh’s last doctor. The doctor nursed him during the last years that Van Gogh lived on earth. Van Gogh created two versions of his famous portrait of Dr. pouch. He made this version and another in the Musée d’Orsay, Paris, France. The last known sale of Van Gogh’s Portrait of Dr. Gachet took place on May 15, 1990, offered by the Siegried Kramarsky family. It was sold to Ryoei Saito at a Christie’s auction in New York. The painting had previously sold for $75 million. It is one of the most remarkable paintings left behind by Van Gogh. It was pained in Saints Reimy and shows the doctor with a melancholy expression. It tells us something about Van Gogh’s state of mind when he created the painting. The painting shows Gachet leaning on his arm at a table, with a thimble nearby, known at the time as a treatment for heart ailments. Gachet is the doctor who pronounced Van Gogh dead after fatally shooting himself. The portrait of dr. Gachet is a symbol of suffering in the midst of success at work. We will never know the artist’s true feelings about the painting.