Arts Abroad: Art History in Southern France, Part 1

July 16, 2010

One in a series of occasional dispatches from SVA’s Summer Arts Abroad programs. This dispatch was sent by student Shannon Broder.

Southern France is brimming with the history of famous painters. While in Arles we walked in the footsteps of Vincent Van Gogh, visiting the site of the Yellow House where he dreamed of starting the “Studio of the South” with post-impressionist painter Paul Gauguin. Both artists stayed in the Yellow House and created a tremendous body of work throughout 1888. Still in Arles is the café that Van Gogh painted Café Terrace at Night (the venue has been renamed Café Van Gogh). We also visited the Hotel Dieu, the hospital where Van Gogh stayed after he cut off his ear.

On another expedition to the town of Aix-en-Provence, we focused on the life of painter Paul Cézanne. We were able to go inside Cézanne’s actual studio, which has been well preserved with all of his tools and belongings. We also climbed up to the view from which Cezanne created his many paintings of Mont Sainte-Victoire.

Images: (top) Art History and BFA Visual and Critical Studies Department Chair Tom Huhn with Arts Abroad students; (bottom) a view of Mont Sainte-Victorie in Aix en Provence. Photos by Shannon Broder.

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