The Old Tower at Nuenen With a Ploughman


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The Old Tower at Nuenen With a Ploughman
Oil on canvas
34.5 × 42 cm (13.5 × 16.5 in)
Signed in lower left: Vincent
Kröller-Müller Museum
Otterlo
Netherlands
Europe
Painted February 1884, Nuenen
F 34, JH 459

The cemetery and church tower were subjects Vincent painted several times during his stay in Nuenen. His brother Theo had visited him and suggested that the old tower would make a nice subject to paint, and after completion Vincent told him in a letter that he was sending him, "the painted study of the old tower that you had especially wished for at one time."

Perhaps more interesting is that Theo and Vincent were having some communication difficulties about Theo's financial support, and Vincent felt Theo was not appreciative of the work he was sending him.

"I can do nothing other than say to you most decidedly that this is no way to behave. As far as my work is concerned, up to now it was indeed apparently the case that you would rather I didn’t send something than that I did. If that’s still the case — well, then in my view either I’m not worthy of your patronage or you think only too flippantly about my drawings."
To Theo van Gogh, circa 24 March 1884

While Theo was steadfast in his support of Vincent the relationship was not always content as efforts to sell Vincent's work were not successful.

ALSO KNOWN AS
The Old Tower in the Cemetery at Nuenen, With a Plowman

PROVENANCE
Miss Margot Begemann, Nuenen (Received from Vincent van Gogh himself);
Mrs. Begemann-Elbing, Nuenen;
Rijksmuseum Kröller-Müller, Otterlo, Netherlands.