Homepage The Vincent van Gogh Paintings Project
Previous painting Next painting Collection 1888. Vincent van Gogh Paintings Project Collection 1886, 1887, 1888, 1889. Vincent van Gogh Paintings Project

Café terrace at night

Vincent was enthusiastic about The Cafe Terrace at Night and wrote to his sister Wil

In point of fact I was interrupted these days by my toiling on a new picture representing the outside of a night cafe. On the terrace there are tiny figures of people drinking. An enormous yellow lantern sheds its light on the terrace, the house and the sidewalk, and even causes a certain brightness on the pavement of the street, which takes a pinkish violet tone. The gable-topped fronts of the houses in a street stretching away under a blue sky spangled with stars are dark blue or violet and there is a green tree. Here you have a night picture without any black in it, done with nothing but beautiful blue and violet and green, and in these surroundings the lighted square acquires a pale sulphur and greenish citron-yellow colour. It amuses me enormously to paint the night right on the spot. They used to draw and paint the picture in the daytime after the rough sketch. But I find satisfaction in painting things immediately.

Oil on canvas
81.0 x 65.5 cm
Arles 1888
The Kröller-Müller Museum Otterlo

Read more ... Composition and Underdrawing Van Gogh's Art Techniques

Cafe Terrace on the Place du Forum, Arles, at Night by Vincent van Gogh
The Vincent van Gogh Paintings Project