Vincent van Gogh made the painting “Wheatfield with Crows” in July 1890. This painting is commonly stated as the final painting by the great artist, and it can be seen now in the Van Gogh Museum. However, there are no historical records that prove it to be his last painting.
“Wheatfield with Crows” is the most disputed painting among all of Van Gogh’s works. There are many interpretations for this work; some even say that it is a suicide note by the artist. The threatening sky, the flock of crows, and dead-end path are said to indicate the life’s end coming near.
Many people also compare this piece of work to an important letter by Van Gogh. In that letter, he relates himself to a bird in a cage and comments, “But then the time comes when migratory birds fly away. A fit of melancholy – he’s got everything he needs, say the children who look after him – but the sky is brooding and stormy, and deep within he is rebelling against his misfortune. ‘I am in a cage, I am in a cage, and I’ve got everything I need, fools! I’ve got everything I could possibly want! Ah, dear God, freedom – to be a bird like the other birds! A human idler of this variety is just like a bird that idles in the same way.”
In this painting, Van Gogh used a brilliant combination of colors, which include the blue contrasts of sky, yellowish orange wheat, and red path with green grass. Below are some other interesting facts about this painting.
- The famous painter shot himself in the stomach at the same wheat field he had painted. Both Van Gogh and his brother Theo are laid to rest in the cemetery facing wheat fields in Auvers-sur-Oise.
- In 1889, before he completed his painting, Van Gogh wrote that wheat is symbolic to the ripening of human life. In Christian tradition, wheat is the symbol of divine love, and to the famous artist, it also symbolized fruits of manual labor.
- During the last months of Van Gogh’s life in 1890, he used double square canvases of two 50 x 100 cm canvases for his paintings and this can be seen in the painting “Wheatfield with Crows” too.