When the Santa Barbara Museum of Art (SBMA) opens its doors on the new exhibition Through Vincent’s Eyes: Van Gogh and His Sources, the axis on which the art world spins will shift a little. That’s because wherever Van Gogh goes, the eyes of the largest audience that ever existed for a painter follow him. Whether it’s the astonishing prices his paintings now earn at auction or the widespread availability of reproductions of his most famous works, the public fascination with this artist seems only to increase with time.
Yet as is suggested by the title Through Vincent’s Eyes, the exhibition that SBMA has mounted, which includes 20 works by Van Gogh alongside 75 objects selected to reflect the artists and writers he most admired, stands at some distance from the crowded Van Gogh marketplace.
Naturally, we wanted to showcase some of his iconic work in a separate slideshow, in conjunction with this week’s cover story. For Charles Donelan’s full cover story, see “Vincent Van Gogh Showcase at Santa Barbara Museum of Art.”