Art: Sanity Defense for a Genius

The Metropolitan reveals Van Gogh's shocking freshness

Vincent is back. We left him at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in 1984, crop- eared and dazed in Arles: "Sometimes moods of indescribable anguish, sometimes moments when the veil of time and fatality of circumstances seemed to be torn apart for an instant." Two months after writing this, he voluntarily entered the lunatic asylum at Saint-Remy in Provence; and 15 months after that, discharged but still plagued by unassuageable fits of melancholy, he shot himself to death in the rural village of Auvers, just north of Paris. Van Gogh was 37 when he died -- at the same age, it...

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