Visual Communication Case Study of “The Potato Eaters” by Vincent Van Gogh (Case Study Sample)
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Visual Communication Case Study of “The Potato Eaters” by Vincent Van Gogh
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“Potato Eaters” is one of Vincent van Gogh’s famous paintings that has become popular in contemporary visual communication arts. It was one of van Gogh’s early paintings in 1885 that helped develop his reputation as an artist (van Tilborgh 24). The art period is realism, and the medium of painting is oil on canvas that is mounted on a panel. Gogh states that: “they (people in the image) have honestly earned their food.”
There is scanty lighting, and an oil lamp is used as the only source of light. Generally, the lighting in the room is poor. The source of light is in the center of the room and illuminates the whole room. The use of one source of light shows the time of the activity. It is evening, and the family is seated together for dinner; furthermore, the wall clock shows that it is seven in the evening, and darkness is creeping. However, the faces of the five figures are brightened by the lighting from the lamp. Both dark and light tones have been used in the painting. The other parts of the cottage are dark, while only a few areas are illuminated; therefore, such use of lighting helps reveal the painting's tone to be contrasting.
The texture of the painting is course because the painter used wide brushstrokes. The coarse texture is important in the painting because it reveals the mood and the tone of the art (Anrys and Dutrй 9). In this case, the coarse texture gives a sense of oppression and hardship the family is experiencing. The composition devices such as balance and proportionality have been used effectively in the painting. The five figures are proportionately balanced.
The painting reveals the state of life that peasants live. The monochromatic painting is giving a mood of melancholy and suffering (Dai 21). Even though the lamp brightens the people's faces in the film, their hands are rough. Rough hands indicate hardship that such families experience. Although such families experience hardship to put a meal on the table, they value family ties and eat together. The painter provided a balancing of one man, three women, and a child, a typical traditional polygamous family. The c