View of the Sea at Scheveningen


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View of the Sea at Scheveningen
Oil on canvas
34.5 × 51 cm (13.5 × 20 in)
Location Unknown
Stolen from the Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam, Netherlands 7 December 2002.
Painted 21 or 22 August 1882, The Hague
F 4, JH 187

On 7 December 2002 two paintings were stolen from the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam, Netherlands. Dutch police convicted two men for the crime in December 2003, each receiving several years in prison, but as of yet the two paintings have not been recovered. The other stolen painting was Congregation Leaving the Reformed Church in Nuenen (F 25, JH 521). Also see the page of works that are stolen, missing, or with attribution or other issues.

Vincent took to the beach at Scheveningen near The Hague during a storm to paint the fury of the sea. Wind was blowing and waves crashing, and the evidence is there in the fact that even today this work has grains of sand embedded in the paint. He describes the scene in a letter written to Theo in August 1882.

"All this week we’ve had gales, storms and rain here, and I’ve been to Scheveningen many times to see it. And came back with two small seascapes. There’s already a lot of sand in the one, but with the second, when there really was a storm and the sea came very close to the dunes, I had to scrape everything off twice because of the thick layer of sand completely covering it. The wind was so strong that I could barely stay on my feet and barely see through the clouds of sand. I tried to get it down anyway by immediately painting it again in a small inn behind the dunes, after first scraping it all off, and then going out to take another look from there. So I have a couple of souvenirs after all."
To Theo van Gogh, 26 August 1882

He concludes the paragraph with the news that he also caught a cold and would be taking a few days break from painting.

ALSO KNOWN AS
Beach at Scheveningen in Stormy Weather

PROVENANCE
Oldenzeel Art Gallery, Rotterdam (1903);
J. Ribbius Peletier, Utrecht (1903);
Scheveningen, Miss E. Ribbius Peletier;
Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam;
Rijksmuseum Vincent van Gogh, Amsterdam, Netherlands;
Location Unknown, Stolen.