Weaver Facing Left With Spinning Wheel

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Weaver Facing Left With Spinning Wheel F 29, JH 471 by Vincent van Gogh
Weaver Facing Left With Spinning Wheel
Oil on canvas
61 × 85 cm (24 × 33.5 in)
Museum of Fine Arts
North America
Painted March 1884, Nuenen
F 29, JH 471

Another of the nine paintings of weavers that Vincent completed when living in Nuenen. One interesting thing about this one is that the cloth being woven is a bright red, adding some color to the palette that at this point was often earthy, even somber. Also the spinning wheel is an interesting addition as Vincent lamented that technology had caused him to see less and less of this visually interesting piece of equipment that was the subject of so many paintings by other artists, but he also saw the loom as an attractive subject in its place. Two years previous to this work he wrote to the painter Anthon van Rappard, "I remember as a boy seeing the heath and the small farmhouses, the looms and the spinning wheels exactly as I see them now in drawings by Mauve and Ter Meulen."

He goes on to add a sentiment that most of us today, in an ever faster changing world, can agree, "The part of Brabant I know well has since changed enormously through land reclamation and industry. It isn’t without a certain nostalgia that I now see a new tavern with a red tiled roof at many places where I remember seeing a wattle-and-daub hut with a moss-covered, thatched roof. Since then have come sugar-beet factories, railways, heath reclamations, etc., which are much less picturesque."
To Anthon van Rappard, 13 August 1882

Other letters seem to indicate that Vincent started this painting in the winter, and while generally believed to have been completed in March, may actually have been working as late as May.

Weaver With Loom and Spinning Wheel

Mrs. C. Dekker-Fortanier, The Hague;
Miss Nelly Dekker, The Hague;
Mrs. C. Dekker-Weinberg, Wassenaar;
Unknown art gallery, Amsterdam;
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (Acquired 1958, Arthur Gordon Tompkins Residuary Fund).