“Undergrowth with Two Figures” Returns Home
Cincinnati Art Museum
Cincinnati Art Museum welcomes home Vincent van Gogh’s beloved painting “Undergrowth with Two Figures.”
One of the most well-known and adored paintings in the museum’s permanent collection, “Undergrowth with Two Figures” is available again to all visitors for enjoyment and study. It was recently a highlight of the successful Van Gogh & Japan exhibition, which was on view in Hokkaido, Tokyo and Kyoto, Japan, and Amsterdam, the Netherlands. The painting was seen by over 750,000 visitors in Japan alone.
Completed in June 1890, “Undergrowth with Two Figures” is one of the final artworks Van Gogh painted before his death. A rhythmic pattern of thick brushstrokes animates the surface of this painting, and trees in rows recess toward the dark background, making the couple seem trapped by the dense vegetation. Van Gogh described the scene in a letter to his brother Theo, dated June 30, 1890, as “violet trunks of poplars which cross the landscape perpendicularly like columns. The depths of the undergrowth are blue, and under the big trunks the flowery meadow, white, pink, yellow, green, long russet grasses and flowers.”
Image credit: Vincent van Gogh (Dutch, b.1853, d.1890); Undergrowth with Two Figures; 1890; oil on canvas; Bequest of Mary E. Johnston; 1967.1430.