1. For this trip to Arles, see letter 841, n. 1. The letter in which Vincent told Theo of this trip is not known. Theo seems relieved to hear that it went well, because Vincent had suffered his first attack in Saint-Rémy (mid-July 1889) shortly after a visit to Arles. Dr Peyron assumed that the attack had been brought on by the trip (see letter 807). In November 1889 Van Gogh had again gone to Arles for two days (letter 820), but had not suffered an attack following that trip.
2. The new canvases are the paintings in the last consignment (letter 834).
3. For Lauzet’s Adolphe Monticelli, see letter 825, n. 7.
Oeuvre de Albert Dürer, reproduit et publié par Amand-Durand. [Paris 1878]. This luxury edition contains, in addition to 108 etchings by Dürer, a short introduction and a description of the works by Georges Duplessis, curator of the Bibliothèque Nationale. It was published jointly by Goupil & Cie and the Gazette des Beaux-Arts.
Jo wrote to her mother about Lauzet’s visits: ‘Vincent is also better and has sent such beautiful paintings – magnificent – Dries came to look at them briefly Sunday morning. At the same time we had a young artist – a real spindleshanks – someone from the South, Marseille I believe – whom Theo likes a lot – he’s making lithographs after two of our paintings and is going to publish a book and an album – I thought him rather nice, in any case very modest – not like Bernard, whom Mien met once. He’s coming again Wednesday evening, when Theo will be holding a presentation of etchings after A. Dürer’ (FR b4300, 14 January 1890).
5. Theo is referring to ‘Petite chronique’ in L’Art Moderne. Revue Critique des Arts et de la Littérature 10 (5 January 1890) no. 1, p. 7: ‘In particular, we might mention among the canvases destined to excite artistic curiosity, Paul Cézanne’s engaging open-air studies, Vincent van Gogh’s vivid symphonies, Sisley’s landscapes, Renoir’s new compositions and the entries of the Neo-Impressionist group, whose technique is becoming ever more sure.’ (On cite notamment, parmi les toiles appelées à exciter la curiosité artistique, les attachantes études de plein air de Paul Cézanne, les symphonies éclatantes de Vincent van Gogh, les paysages de Sisley, le compositions nouvelles de Renoir et l’envoi du groupe néo-impressioniste, dont la technique s'affirme de plus en plus.)
For the paintings Van Gogh sent to the exhibition of Les Vingt, see letter 820. Cézanne exhibited three paintings, Sisley six and Renoir five. See Delevoy 1981, pp. 201, 210, 213.
6. The sixth exhibition of the Société des Artistes Indépendants was held in Paris from 20 March to 27 April 1890. Van Gogh had participated in the exhibitions of 1888 and 1889; see letter 582, nn. 8 and 9, and letter 732, n. 6. Ten of his paintings were displayed at the 1890 exhibition; see letter 854, n. 7.
7. In letter 839 Van Gogh had suggested sending his furniture from the Yellow House, which was in storage at Ginoux’s Café de la Gare, to Gauguin and De Haan in Brittany.
8. In 1880 Mr van Gogh had wanted to have Vincent committed to a lunatic asylum in Geel. See letter 185, n. 3.
a. Read: ‘nous arrivons au terme’.
9. This wording suggests that Isaäcson had a child from an extra-marital relationship, but no proof of this has been found. In 1904 he married in Amsterdam.
10. Regarding Isaäcson’s plans to go to the Transvaal, see letter 811, n. 2.
11. Theo is referring to the paintings of olive groves from the last consignment: Women picking olives (F 655 / JH 1869 ), Olive grove (F 707 / JH 1857 ), Olive trees (F 708 / JH 1855 ) and Olive grove (F 586 / JH 1854 ). The last painting is the one with a sunset.
12. In letter 839 Van Gogh had written about his painted copies of prints after Millet’s The four times of the day and The labours of the field , and about his intention to make copies of Winter: The plain of Chailly and The first steps .
13. The publication in question is F. Lippmann, with the assistance of W. Bode, Sidney Colvin, F. Seymour Haden and J.P. Heseltine, Original drawings by Rembrandt Harmensz. van Rijn reproduced in phototype. Four series edited by C. Hofstede de Groot. London, Paris and The Hague 1889-1911.
14. Salles had left his calling card with a short message for Theo, saying that he was sorry to have missed him (FR b3189).