Girl in White in the Woods


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Girl in White in the Woods by Vincent van Gogh
Girl in White in the Woods
Oil on canvas
39 × 59 cm (15.25 × 23.25 in)
Kröller-Müller Museum
Otterlo
Netherlands
Europe
Painted August 1882, The Hague
F 8, JH 182

A bit larger in size than some of the other studies of girls in woods from this time, this piece has remained a favorite of the public over time. Vincent wrote to Theo and thoroughly described the work he put into the painting to gain depth, and his attempt to involve the viewer, to make them feel a part of the forest.

"The other study from the woods is of big green beech trunks on a ground with dead leaves, and the small figure of a girl in white.
The great difficulty there was to keep it clear and bring in space between the tree-trunks, which stand at different distances — and the place and relative thickness of the trunks altered by the perspective. To ensure, in short, that one can breathe and wander about in it — and smell the woods."

To Theo van Gogh, 20 August 1882

The low perspective of the view of the artist leads some to wonder if Vincent painted this while on his knees, a fact backed up by there being small pieces of oak leaves embedded in the paint.

In a later letter Vincent included a small sketch of the same composition, referring to it as "another scratch from the woods."
To Theo van Gogh, 9 September 1882

ALSO KNOWN AS
Girl in a Wood


PROVENANCE
L. C. Enthoven, Voorburg;
Sale Enthoven, Amsterdam (F. Muller) 18 May 1920;
Rijksmuseum Kröller-Müller, Otterlo, Netherlands.