Van Gogh’s Relationship with Alcohol

Vincent van Gogh drank alcohol to excess; more specifically he drank the potent liquor absinthe, also known as “the green fairy,” which was believed to cause delirium and hallucinations. Absinthe was also believed to cause a drinker to see yellow hue around objects, which some say can be seen in paintings such as Starry Night. However, more recent research has shown that the amount of absinthe consumed would need to be quite substantial to reach this effect, so this was probably not the explanation for Van Gogh’s yellows. The drinking of absinthe was quite common amongst the artist crowd of Van Gogh’s time, so his consumption of the beverage was …..

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