My dear Theo,
Today I sent you 1 drawing of Kitchen gardens in Laan van Meerdervoort.1
So now you have a figure of mine2
and a landscape. And I think you’ll see that I’m not staying at the same level.
Even though this is ‘only white and black’ and unsaleable??? and disagreeable??? I still hope that there may be something strong in it. And I think that, far from holding it against me for devoting myself specifically to drawing things, one can see it as definite proof that I’m taking the most practical path. Considering that one can more easily go from drawing to painting than the other way round: making paintings without drawing the necessary studies.
It goes without saying that it gives me great displeasure and doesn’t make my life any easier when those whose sympathy I more or less thought I could count on, such as Mauve
, become indifferent or hostile and hateful. I haven’t heard anything from Mauve, sometimes he’s ill, at other times he needs to rest or is too busy. How beautiful his painting for the Salon was.
But you understand these things yourself, so enough of this.
This little drawing also needs a small grey mount.3
You write that you’ve moved house.4
I’ll do my best to make something now and then for the walls of your new home.
I may also have a few nice woodcuts, if you’d like them, since I have duplicates of several nice things. But you must look at them when you come this summer.
Though I haven’t moved, I’ve nevertheless made a change in my house by having a bedroom partitioned off in the attic, so I now have more room in my studio, the more so because the stove is gone.5
Drawing, you see, involves all kinds of things that many would prefer to disregard.
There’s the true perspective of an interior, for example (sometime I’ll send you one of those as well), there are the broad outlines of a landscape, and as for me, I see no chance of success without studying the nude. All of that is essentially drawing
, much is clarified when one has mastered that to some extent, and I, for my part, go calmly on my way, knowing that if I persevere, before long I’ll overtake those who think they can skip over such things.
Well, I wish you the best – it’s very bleak and windy here, which I find particularly annoying because I can’t get on with the townscapes for C.M.
, which I’d otherwise capture in my spare moments.6
But surely it will become mild again.
With a handshake,
Perhaps more effort went into this little drawing than into many a watercolour. I sent it to blvd Montmartre7
so that you could immediately mount it and press it flat.