Saturday in the Museum with Vincent

Image: Vincent van Gogh, Peasant Woman Bruising Flax (after Millet) (1889).

Last week for our art post, we focused on the work of Jean-François Millet who took as a subject the work of those in the fields. For this week, we found a van Gogh that was done working from a black and white print of Millet’s work. Van Gogh added the color back in, with his characteristic vibrancy.

The original Millet work (that the print was based on), translated as Breaking Flax, is located down the road at the Walters Art Museum. The museum describes the subject as, “Using ancient methods, she pulverizes sheaves of flax to separate the fibers for making linen.” It was one in a series of paintings that Millet did on the topic of rural labor called Travaux des champs.

Van Gogh, described to his brother his satisfaction with his version, “You’ll be surprised what effect the Travaux des champs take on in colour, it’s a very intimate series of his.” The work is in the holdings of the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam.

Any suggestion that this painting is an obvious referencing of the colors of the Ukrainian flag on a week they made another battlefield gain is justified. We are sure World Central Kitchen will be in Lyman soon to offer relief if you want to consider donating. Not to mention relief in Florida and Puerto Rico.


We bet our readers are not putting in the same kind of work day as those in 19th century rural France, but if you have worked up an appetite nonetheless and are looking for a place to eat in Washington, D.C., then we can help with that. When we are not posting about art, we are a dining guide for the District. We have 300+ recommended restaurants in the guide. You can sort by cuisine, neighborhood, and current operating status (dine-in and/or take-out, etc. – though things are in flux and we may miss something, so check before you go!) in either LIST or MAP format.

If you don’t already, consider giving us a follow. We are on FB, Insta, and Twitter.  Click on the icons at the top or bottom of this page to stay up to date.