Vincent van Gogh (1853 - 1890), Paris, Summer 1887
oil on cardboard,
19.0 cm x 14.1 cm
Credits (obliged to state): Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam (Vincent van Gogh Foundation)
This painting was long thought to be a self-portrait of Vincent; however, another view is that it shows his brother Theo.
The brothers, namely, bore a striking resemblance to one another. Unfortunately, there is no decisive evidence to determine who is actually portrayed, which is why the painting now has a double title.
The portrait is unusually small and painted in considerable detail. Van Gogh was probably trying to compete with portrait photos. He had written some time earlier, 'it's a cause worth fighting for to show people that there's something else in human beings besides what the photographer is able to get out of them with his machine.'