Understanding Van Gogh's Night: bipolar disorder

Details

Serval ID
serval:BIB_A1C2073080C3
Type
Article: article from journal or magazin.
Collection
Publications
Institution
Title
Understanding Van Gogh's Night: bipolar disorder
Journal
Neurological Disorders in Famous Artists
Author(s)
Carota A, Iaria G, Berney A, Bogousslavsky J
ISSN
1660-4431
Publication state
Published
Issued date
2005
Volume
19
Pages
121-131
Language
english
Abstract
Vincent Van Gogh (1853-1890) imparted in his art a deep essence of life, and in such a unique way that many would say it is possible to experience it vicariously by looking at his paintings even once. In 10 years, while exerting mental and physical efforts that may well have contributed to his premature death, he produced an impressive number of masterpieces. However, the specific neurological disorder Van Gogh suffered and how this may have influenced his art is still not clear. The combination of his eccentric personality, irascible temper, unstable moods and prolific creativity, makes the understanding of his illness a very complex endeavor and therefore poses a great challenge to those who investigate the relationships between the 'artistic mind', the brain and illness. In fact, most of the diagnoses (nearly 30) proposed for Van Gogh, during the last century, are not based on medical evidence but are ascertainable from analyses of his paintings and biographical data. Although no definitive diagnosis can be made based on such evidence, we conclude that according to DSM-IV criteria and findings extrapolated from his letters, Van Gogh is most likely to have suffered a bipolar disorder, affective or schizoaffective, which caused his death by suicide.
Create date
01/05/2009 13:19
Last modification date
20/08/2019 16:07
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