Talk:The Starry Night

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
          This article is of interest to the following WikiProjects:
Museum of Modern Art project (Rated B-class)
WikiProject icon This article is related to the Museum of Modern Art. Please copy assessments of the article from the most major WikiProject template to this one as needed.
B-Class article B  This article has been rated as B-Class on the quality scale.
 ???  This article has not yet received a rating on the importance scale.
WikiProject Visual arts (Rated B-class)
WikiProject icon This article is within the scope of WikiProject Visual arts, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of visual arts on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
B-Class article B  This article has been rated as B-Class on the quality scale.
WikiProject Netherlands (Rated B-class)
WikiProject icon This article falls within the scope of WikiProject Netherlands, an attempt to create, expand, and improve articles related to the Netherlands on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, visit the project page where you can join the project or contribute to the discussion.
B-Class article B  This article has been rated as B-Class on the project's quality scale.


im doin my home work on it.......wat is the meanin of tha painting????

The meaning of the painting can be deceptive due to the title, the picture is about a manic depressive broken heart, the dark sky is the sea, the stars of lost love in the sky, the sun burns brightly in turmoil, dark hair flowing in the wind, the church is empty. Hope this helps.Panoptic0n (talk) 20:27, 7 July 2008 (UTC)

i no!! isn't there a description that say's sumat lyk "... eleven

amazingly enlarged stars... entwined... cosmic happening" or something ??? if any1 knows this description please tell us!!!! i need to know!!!!!

wow! i found it! if ani1 wants to know the description of starry night,

go to this website (it's ace if ur doing homework!): [[2]] it starts off; "A highly dramatic cosmic event is taking place..." if ani1 reckonnises this, this website is the one u need! xxx

The meaning of this painting is "Life and Death, the town and the heavens- collide, and they are connected by both the church spire and the swaying cypress, a tree traditionally used to mark graves in southern France and Italy. Van Gogh himself writes to this brother "My paintings are almost a cry of anguish". The meaning is "Life and Death". Reference is "A World of Art" by Sayre 2007. This painting was created a year before the artist committed suicide. He committed suicide on July 27, 1890.


Several sources suggests that The Starry Night is the common name in english. I'll move the page soon. [3] [4] ✏ Sverdrup 15:26, 15 Nov 2004 (UTC)

You're correct. One of your references is the museum in which the painting is kept, which I think is sufficiently authoritative. I've gone ahead and moved the article and corrected the name. Rory 16:29, Nov 15, 2004 (UTC)

me too i have to describe it and write what i think it means — Preceding unsigned comment added by Sandylos57 (talkcontribs) 19:27, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

Incorrect reference to astronomical investigation[edit]

I've removed the following:

It was determined 114 years after the painting had been made, in 2003, by the Southwest Texas State University astronomers Russell Doescher and Donald Olson, along with Olson's wife, Marilyn by using astronomical simulation software, that the painting captures the moment in time of 9:08 p.m. on July 13th., 1889 [5]. The composition correlates with the view from the window in his room — the cyprus trees have been confirmed to have existed during the time of his stay.

If you follow the link, it becomes apparent that this is about a different painting, Moonrise (also, anyone could figure out that there's no way you're going to see stars at 21:08 in July). I'll try and see if I can find a better date. Junes 09:41, 1 August 2005 (UTC)

I guess this is oil on canvas. What are the dimensions of the painting? I really like this picture, perhaps I'll do a copy of it sometime. I guess he used prussian and cobalt blue, umber and white and bits of some warm yellow colour and red. --Publunch 15:38, 23 December 2005 (UTC)

OK, I found the dimensions and stuff with a quick google search. Can't guarantee that the source was authoritative though.

Last painting?[edit]

I heard that this was his last and final work before he killed himself..gun shot to the heart. Stevenwagner 05:40, 7 March 2006 (UTC)

No, it's not his last painting. At least that's what our article Vincent van Gogh says. Junes 20:03, 8 March 2006 (UTC)

Aurora Borealis?[edit]

It looks to me like he was trying to describe, in his medium, the northern lights, which may not have been a common sight in those latitudes at that time. But it certainly looks like the northern lights. I also know it is hard enough to capture it on film or in digital media, as it is always changing, at least in an active storm. Normally it is just another hue in the night sky, slowly shifting as are the stars, but when they are active, what you see is mind-blowing! When you try to capture them, they get away from you, using paint, film, digitization, or paint. You could hope to capture them with video or motion picture technology, but they are really too dim for all of that, and their magnificance is lost. When you have a long exposure film, the stars move. When you have a long exposure light-sensitive CCD, it looks out of focus, regardless of the stability of the stars or terrestrial objects. It is only when the human mind is involved, which can interpret and cast new light, or shadow, on such phenomena, through emotional interpretation, that a strikingly accurate and even recognizable portrayal can be found. He did with his mind and artistic medium, what cannot be done with all of our technological advances today! This is the Aurora Borealis!

I doubt it. See [6], about Van Gogh: Starry Night, by Albert Boime - ... UCLA's Griffin Observatory determined that the painting represented the predawn sky of June 19, 1889 (Van Gogh's letters pinpoint the time and date) .... -- JackofOz (talk) 00:30, 20 February 2008 (UTC)

Interesting comparison[edit]

Comparison of Don McLean's music and lyrics, with Anne Sexton's poetry, read by Ms. Sexton herself, along with visuals from several sources for comparison. I'm not sure how to add an external links section, not even sure I've added a new topic here correctly, I've just followed how others seem to have done it. Is this how an external links section would be entered on the subject page?

External links[edit]

Why did he create this painting?[edit]

It said he died excatly 13 months before he died, but it didnt say anything about why he painted this painting, WikiPedia should be more specific.

So should you. :-)


Removed from the text:

Often associated with this painting are Van Gogh's words, "Just as we take the train to get to Tarascon or Rouen, we take death to reach a star."

The quote is from a letter written in Arles, not in Saint-Rémy - and this implies to handle this association with caution. And at all, where is often? Please supply sources for this statement! --RPD 20:39, 22 August 2006 (UTC)

Common places removed from main page[edit]

  • Created by van Gogh while he was in the asylum at Saint Rémy de Provence in June 1889, the painting portrays a swirling skyscape filled with yellow glowing stars above a small town and rolling hills. It was painted by Van Gogh just 13 months before his suicide. The large dark formation in the foreground left of center has been described as the tip of a tree, although art historians have presented various other interpretations. Its purpose seems to be to direct the eye towards the sky. In addition, it adds depth to the painting. A church steeple in the town also points towards the sky, emphasising the sense of looking up. This artwork is considered one of the great masterpieces of its time, as it achieves both beautiful and agitated effects simultaneously.

This is no portrait, not even a landscape, but a painting with its own rules and rights. - What means it has been described, by what art historians? Supply sources! And a tower tends to point to the sky. I don't want to comment the rest. --RPD 23:36, 22 August 2006 (UTC)

Pairing with Wheatfield with Cypresses[edit]

From the main page:

  • Lubin[1] suggests that the imaginary city painted in The Starry Night can be thought of in terms of the "eternal city" in Van Gogh's sermon, the goal of the pilgrim: "Hopeful as he looks up to the eternal city far away, resplendent in the evening glow"[3]
  • In the end neither of these paintings were included in the exhibition.


    • Reference is to the Indépendants 1889, to Starry Night over the Rhone and to a view from the public garden, most ptobably the version now in the Phillips Collection, Washington (cf. image at The Décoration for the Yellow House
    • The village is really not imaginary, but close to reality: see subject.
    • Lubin's psychoanalytical approach often does no longer meet the present state of evaluation of Van Gogh's letters.
  1. ^ a b Lubin, Stranger on the earth: A psychological biography of Vincent van Gogh, Holt, Rinehart, and Winston, 1972. ISBN 0030913527, page 197. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; name "lubin197" defined multiple times with different content (see the help page).
  2. ^ Letter 593
  3. ^ Letter 79 with enclosed sermon

--RPD 18:44, 23 August 2006 (UTC)

Thanks ... I'll remove the section from the main article. Stumps 20:10, 23 August 2006 (UTC)

expand this page?[edit]

It is a talk page considered to be expanded - so I remove the expand-tag here, and insert it on the main page. --RPD 00:04, 29 October 2006 (UTC)

Whirlpool Galaxy[edit]

"The Starry Night has striking similarities to Whirlpool Galaxy". I get the feeling this has just been added to expand the article because i don't see any similarities whatsoever, and thus i think it should be removed from the article. Please add your thoughts on this. OGOL 19:29, 28 June 2007 (UTC)

is this an appropriate external link ?[edit]

Signpostmarv (talk) 14:19, 25 November 2007 (UTC)

I added a link to the youtube page and a short description because I think this is definitely a historic milestone in the life and influence of the painting.Mrrealtime (talk) 12:20, 10 July 2008 (UTC)

Foreground shape[edit]

I've reverted several consecutive unsourced mentions (all coming from anonymous addresses at the same university, and ignoring the request for a reference) of the foreground shape as being that of a castle. The traditional reading is that this is a cypress tree, which is how the Museum of Modern Art describes it on its web site. There are likely other interpretations as well, but if you are going to make a definitive statement that 'critics' believe it is a building, please provide a reliable source. Otherwise, it's WP:OR. JNW (talk) 05:06, 11 December 2007 (UTC)

Comment on the following text in the article:[edit]

This is no photography of an actual site, but a free compilation of local topics to be seen in the neighborhood of the asylum in Saint-Rémy and compiled by an artist who had studied the various elements of his composition in detail. The center part shows the village of Saint-Rémy, in a view from the asylum towards north. The Alpilles far to the right fit to this view, but there is little rapport of the actual scene with the intermediary hills which seem to be derived from a different part of the surroundings, south of the asylum. The cypress tree to the left was added into the composition.[6] Of note, is the fact van Gogh had already, during his time in Arles, repositioned Ursa Major from the north to the south in his painting Starry Night Over the Rhone.

Comment: The overall picture may be a montage of various parts of the surrounding area, however the depiction of the sky is accurate. He could see exactly that skyscape through his window in the asylum, in the pre-dawn of 19 June 1889. Albert Boime and Edwin Krupp used the Zeiss Planetary Projector at Griffin Park Observatory at UCLA to recreate the moment van Gogh was depicting, and the positions of van Gogh's stars matched perfectly with their scientifically calculated positions at that moment. See [7]. -- JackofOz (talk) 00:40, 20 February 2008 (UTC)

Your research, citing Boime and Krupp, would be a valuable addition to the article. JNW (talk) 01:29, 20 February 2008 (UTC)

Image of painting[edit]

I recently photographed this painting at MOMA and found differences between my photograph and the painting depicted in the photograph. In particular the large bright star to the right of the foreground object shows no evidence of black paint in the photograph I took.

Should it be confirmed that the image used is the original? I'd submit my photo but I'm not sure that I have permission to reproduce the image for other than personal use.

Meconlen (talk) 18:37, 22 April 2008 (UTC)

Your photo is in agreement with my recent viewing of this work at the MOMA. If you can clear up the copyright, I would vote to use your image. The current image (while an improvement over a previous image that was discussed here) is too dark, the brown and green in the cypress tree looks black. Color balance in both images is fairly accurate, though. (edited to have my username, wasn't logged in) C.anguschandler (talk) 07:11, 2 December 2008 (UTC)


"Tupac Shakur also wrote a poem dedicated to Van Gogh in his poetry Book: The Rose That Grew From Concrete.[citation needed]"

What's needed is an explanation as to why this is relevant to this page. (talk) 22:59, 11 May 2009 (UTC)

Article Lacks Clarity[edit]

This page does not appear to tell me very much at all about "Starry Night". The "Genesis" section makes no explicit mention of "Starry Night", and seems to refer throughout to "Starry Night over the Rhone". Presumably some of the items refer to "Starry Night", but it's not possible, even on careful re-reading, to tell for certain which. There is no information to say when "Starry Night" was painted. If we don't know, then the article should say something like "It is now known exactly when Starry Night was painted. However, it did not exist before X because..., and the earliest reference to it is Y".

The article seems to have been written and edited by people who are familiar with Van Gogh's works, and so don't need to know basic facts. It should be edited for clarity. A small explicit referenc to "Starry Night" in the Genesis paragraph would help enormously. Simhedges (talk) 10:31, 6 February 2010 (UTC)

I tried to deal with this issue. Frankly I'm not sure why the paragraph is there at all, other than perhaps to do service as vehicle for the various letters it references. The paintings date is known exactly from the letters. LornaDooneBlackmore (talk) 17:22, 19 February 2012 (UTC)

TNG "Sighting"[edit]

You never actually see the painting in the Star Trek episode, it's only mentioned as one of the many things the collector who kidnapped Data and faked his death, thrown in as something "real" to convey to the audience the significance of the guy's possessions as it dawns on Picard & Co. what really happened to Data.--Ten-pint (talk) 21:17, 13 June 2010 (UTC)


Any thoughts on a trivia section being added called cultural references? In my opinion it belongs here: Cultural depictions of Vincent van Gogh not in this article that is about the painting Starry Night...Modernist (talk) 13:04, 30 December 2010 (UTC)

I'm not a fan of the idea. Such sections tend to debase the legitimacy of the article, which should be about the painting itself, not homages or off-hand pop culture references to the painting.--Chimino (talk) 22:26, 19 January 2011 (UTC)

Meaning (Proposal)[edit]

On one level, Van Gogh's The Starry Night illustrates his connection with God. He was a deeply religious man, previously a Christian preacher[1] and he had often used his art as an outlet for his faith. The Night Sky with the swirling patterns is symbolic of God and heaven whilst the town beneath is symbolic of life and mankind. Any visual connection between the two sections of the painting can thus be taken as a symbolic connection between heaven and earth.

The first connector, roughly in the centre of the lower part of the painting is a church. The church spire rises above the horizon, breaching the sky from the ground - connecting the symbols of god and man. This in itself is an obvious symbol for religion, as this is the medium in which god and man are commonly believed to come together. The second connector is a cypress tree in the foreground. This visually spans most of the vertical space in the painting, much more so than the church spire. Cypress trees were often used as a symbol of death, as they were commonly found in graveyards. As religion represented by the church connects god and man, god and man are also brought together in death - shown as the cypress tree connecting the earth and sky.

In the painting, the cypress tree takes up much more space than the church and its spire. A possible interpretation is that Van Gogh felt religion had failed him in bringing him closer to god and believed death was a more 'effective' way of reaching god. Vincent killed himself the next year.

I plan to add this to the article soon. Please suggest some changes if you see any problems. Devicide (talk)
Oppose unsourced addition. 1876 letter does not describe 1889 painting. WP:RS. WP:NOR? Glrx (talk) 14:38, 14 April 2011 (UTC)
Please read WP:OR and don't add this to the article, thanks...Modernist (talk) 17:47, 14 April 2011 (UTC)

Suggesting that a paragraph on where the painting is showcased or seen in media. Example being that the starry night painting is breefly seen in the first opening sequence of the Sailor Moon Anime/Metaseries. ([[[HEEROFLUFFY]]]) — Preceding unsigned comment added by HEEROFLUFFY (talkcontribs) 09:14, 31 July 2011 (UTC)

i like pictures — Preceding unsigned comment added by Sandylos57 (talkcontribs) 19:26, 26 February 2012 (UTC)

File:Van Gogh - Starry Night - Google Art Project.jpg to appear as POTD[edit]

Hello! This is a note to let the editors of this article know that File:Van Gogh - Starry Night - Google Art Project.jpg will be appearing as picture of the day on May 15, 2013. You can view and edit the POTD blurb at Template:POTD/2013-05-15. If this article needs any attention or maintenance, it would be preferable if that could be done before its appearance on the Main Page. Thanks! — Crisco 1492 (talk) 22:54, 28 April 2013 (UTC)

Picture of the day
The Starry Night

The Starry Night is an 1889 painting by the Dutch post-impressionist artist Vincent van Gogh. One of the artist's best known works, it was painted from memory and depicts the view outside van Gogh's sanitarium room window at Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, France. Van Gogh, however, was reportedly unhappy with it; he wrote that the "lines are warped as that of old wood".

Painting: Vincent van Gogh
ArchiveMore featured pictures...

Popular culture[edit]

I suggest that this reference is added:

A video [1] visualizing the iconic flow of the painting became viral in 2012.

This video was featured in many important internet sites, and received very positive reviews:

So I believe it's worth the note, at least as "Doctor Who" episode does.

  1. ^ [1] Starry night interactive animation (talk) 10:39, 12 August 2014 (UTC)

  • Oppose. I just don't see the value in mentioning it. There's also a promo aspect. Glrx (talk) 22:15, 12 August 2014 (UTC)

Where is the value in referencing a "Doctor who" episode? Isn't there a promo aspect too?... — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:58, 13 August 2014 (UTC) Why do insist not to consider as "popular culture" a video that has over 2 million views, without absolutely any promotion? Also, please consider the fact that this video is widely used for educational purposes, all around the world... — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:16, 16 August 2014 (UTC)

Trolling on the Vincent van Gogh's Starry Night page[edit]

This is one of the excerpts written on the page under the guise of being "official": "The starry night is not done by Vincent Van Gogh it was done by Bob Jane T-Marts in the 1788's with a windows 10 hp computer." — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:47, 27 May 2016 (UTC)

What tools were used to make The Starry Night?[edit]

I have a school report to do and I looked at you're information and I might of not seen it or it just wasn't there. I would like to know what tools were used to create this beautiful painting. I would like details please. I would like to know the colors he used the way he swayed with the painting and what inspired him to make it. I am sorry if I maybe missed this information in your article. Please respond ASAP . Thank You . — Preceding unsigned comment added by PandaGRL125 (talkcontribs) 00:47, 17 October 2016 (UTC)