My dear Theo,
I’m dropping you another line to explain that 3 studies are missing from the consignment of canvases (which you will have already), since by removing them the roll cost 3.50 francs less for carriage. So I’ll send them next opportunity – or rather they’re leaving today with other canvases – the following.

Wheatfield and cypresses2
The ivy4

Study of cypresses5
The olive trees8

then also the three studies mentioned below, Poppies9 – Night effect10 – Moonrise11. Soon I’m sending you a few smaller canvases with the 4 or 5 studies I wanted to give to Mother and our sister. These studies are drying at the moment. It’s no. 10 and no. 12 canvases, reductions of the Wheatfield and cypresses,12 Olive trees,13 Reaper14 and Bedroom15 and a little portrait of me.16
This will give them a good start, and I think this will give both you and me some pleasure to ensure that our sister or sisters have a small collection of paintings. I’ll do reductions of the best canvases with them in mind, in this way I also wanted them to have the red and green vineyard, the pink chestnut trees, the night effect that you exhibited.17  1v:2
You’ll see that I’m gaining a little patience, and that persevering will be a result of my illness. I feel more detached from many preoccupations.
You’ll send me one day, when it suits you, the red vineyard and other canvases with that aim when you’ve seen the 5 that I’ve done.
Now for that reaper – at first I feared that the large format repetition that I’m sending you wasn’t bad – but afterwards, when the days of mistral and rain came, I preferred the canvas done from life, which appeared a little odd to me.18 But no, when the weather’s cold and sad, it’s precisely that one that makes me remember once again that summer furnace over the white-hot wheat, so the exaggeration isn’t as much as all that.
Père Peyron came back and chatted with me about seeing you, and said that no doubt your letter would tell me all the details of the conversation he’d had with you.19 That in any case the upshot was that it would be wise to go on waiting here. Which, also being my opinion, goes without saying.
Nevertheless, if an attack recurs I still want to try a change of climate, and even to return to the north as a stopgap.  1v:3
Mr Peyron said that you looked as if you were well, which gives me pleasure.
I’ve received the 10 tubes of white,20 but as soon as possible I’ll need another dozen zinc white
  large  tubes  Cobalt
Chrome 1
  1 small tube carmine

For there are fine autumnal effects to do.
At present I feel completely normal and no longer remember those bad days at all.
With work and very regular food this will probably last for quite a long time, so-so, and I’ll also do my work all the same without it appearing. For at the end of the month you’ll receive another dozen studies.
Am I mistaken, but it seems to me that your letter is very delayed this time?
Unfortunately there are no vineyards here, otherwise I’d promised myself to do nothing else this autumn. There are some, but for that I would have had to go and stay in another village.  1r:4
On the other hand the olive trees are very characteristic, and I’m struggling to capture that. It’s silver, sometimes more blue, sometimes greenish, bronzed, whitening on ground that is yellow, pink, purplish or orangeish to dull red ochre.21
But very difficult, very difficult. But that suits me and attracts me to work fully in gold or silver. And one day perhaps I’ll do a personal impression of it, the way the sunflowers are for yellows.22 If only I’d had some of them this autumn. But this half-freedom often prevents one from doing what one nevertheless feels able to do. Patience, however, you’ll tell me, and it’s indeed necessary.
Give my warm regards to Jo, look after yourself, and write soon please.

Ever yours,


Br. 1990: 807 | CL: 608
From: Vincent van Gogh
To: Theo van Gogh
Date: Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, Saturday, 28 September 1889

1. Wheatfield (F 719 / JH 1725 [2798]).
2. Wheatfield and cypresses (F 717 / JH 1756 [2816]).
3. Wheatfield and cypresses (F 615 / JH 1755 [2815]).
4. Trees with ivy in the garden of the asylum (F 746 / JH 1762 [2821]).
5. Cypresses (F 613 / JH 1746 [2807]). Van Gogh kept for himself the other painting of cypresses: F 620 / JH 1748 [2809]; in April 1890 he decided to give it to the critic Albert Aurier (see letter 863).
[2807] [2809]
6. Reaper (F 617 / JH 1753 [2813]).
7. Reaper (F 618 / JH 1773 [2828]).
8. Olive trees (F 715 / JH 1759 [2819]) or Olive grove (F 585 / JH 1758 [2818]). See letter 805, n. 23.
[2819] [2818]
9. Fields with poppies (F 581 / JH 1751 [2811]).
10. Starry night (F 612 / JH 1731 [2801]).
11. Wheatfield with sheaves and rising moon (F 735 / JH 1761 [2820]).
12. Wheatfield and cypresses (F 743 / JH 1790 [2842]) is a smaller version of the works listed in nn. 2 and 3 above; it measures 52 x 65 cm (no. 15 canvas).
13. No small version is known of any of the paintings of olive groves.
14. Reaper (F 619 / JH 1792 [2844]) is a smaller version of the works listed in nn. 6 and 7 above; it measures 59.5 x 73 cm (no. 20 canvas).
15. The bedroom (F 483 / JH 1793 [2845]) is a smaller version of The bedroom (F 482 / JH 1608 [2735]) and The bedroom (F 484 / JH 1771 [3007]). It measures 56.5 x 74 cm (no. 20 canvas).
[2845] [2735] [3007]
16. This ‘little portrait of me’ was Self-portrait with clean-shaven face (F 525 / JH 1665 [2769]), 40 x 31 cm. Van Gogh depicted the portrait in The bedroom (F 483 / JH 1793 [2845]), the painting intended for his mother and Willemien (see n. 15).
[2769] [2845]
17. The green vineyard (F 475 / JH 1595 [2726]), The red vineyard (F 495 / JH 1626 [2745]), Avenue of chestnut trees in blossom (F 517 / JH 1689 [2785]) and Starry night over the Rhône (F 474 / JH 1592 [2723]). The last-mentioned painting was on display at the fifth exhibition of the Société des Artistes Indépendants; see letter 799. In the end Van Gogh did not make a repetitions of these.
[2726] [2745] [2785] [2723]
18. The version painted from nature is Reaper (F 617 / JH 1753 [2813]); the repetition is Reaper (F 618 / JH 1773 [2828]).
[2813] [2828]
19. Theo spoke of Dr Peyron’s visit in letter 807.
20. Van Gogh had asked for ten tubes of zinc white in letter 801. Theo had told him that Tasset had no more zinc white in stock and that it would take a while for the order to be filled (letter 802).
21. Van Gogh’s description of the trees and the soil corresponds quite closely with the ones in Olive grove (F 711 / JH 1791 [3116]). That must have been the painting he was working on, and the smaller, more sketchy Olive grove (F 709 / JH 1760) probably shortly preceded it. See exhib. cat. Dallas 2021, pp. 109, 115.
[3116] [851]
22. Van Gogh is referring to the five paintings of sunflowers made in Arles. On this subject, see letter 783, n. 9.