Van Gogh Alive, is a large-scale, multi-sensory experience chronicling the life of renowned artist Vincent Van Gogh. Having already inspired over 6 million people, and 50 cities around the world, it now makes its way to Sydney, Australia.
Since his passing, Van Gogh’s works have been displayed all over the world to large crowds, eager to get a glimpse into the beautiful, albeit tortured, mind of the great Dutch painter. With each showcase of his works, the immersion has increased to allow the viewer to get a more intimate interaction with the artist. The latest exhibition by Sensory 4/Grande Exhibitions aims to fully immerse the viewer in Van Gogh’s artworks.
Van Gogh Alive: The Experience
Where once the viewer needed to line up in silence, waiting for their brief opportunity to view Van Gogh’s artworks, here the audience is front row centre for the entire exhibit, as images of Van Gogh’s most famous pieces are brought to life along the walls and floors of the exhibition centre. The animated works given additional depth and meaning wth the accompanying music, creating an ambiance of emotion so the viewer not only sees the artwork, but truely experiences the emotion behind it.
“I am seeking, i am striving, i am in it with all my heart”
When the viewer first enters the grand hall, they are greeted to a life size replica of his work “Bedroom in Arles” and then lead though the artists life through the use of icons works at different stages of his life. From Van Gogh’s early years in the Netherlands, through his time in Paris and Arles, then to Saint-Remy and Auvers-sur-Oise during his final years. Each picture reveals a brief backstory that lead up to that piece and chronicles Van Gogh’s state of mind. As you progress you are witness to the visual representation of a mind full of limitless beauty, as well as a haunting darkness.
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Finishing the visual tour of Van Gogh’s life, the viewer is then presented with a biography of his life, starting with his formative years and early career, his transition to art at the age of 27, then finishing with his legacy of works he left behind (2000 works of art consisting of 930 paintings and 1100 drawings and sketches). The most captivating detail being that during his life, Van Gogh only ever sold one painting (“The Red Vineyard”) to the Impressionist art collector Anna Boch in 1890 for 400 francs ($1900 USD today) and then 100 years later, his work “Portrait Of Doctor Gachet” was sold for $82.5 Million USD in 1990.
At this point the viewer is then led down a darkened hallway, shrouded in black curtains, to eventually emerge in the grand hall. It is here that the viewer is transported into the art works themselves as the works of Van Gogh are splashed across the walls and floor, with the artists own words interjected between pieces. Not only are the works projected onto the surrounding walls, but many are also animated, and when coupled with classical music score, it is an assault to the senses as you feel every brushstroke and every emotion that Van Gogh was dealing with with each piece.
“Van Gogh Alive is not an art exhibition in traditional sense. It is an immersive multimedia art experience which combined high projections of Van Gogh’s paints with digital sound.”– From The Website
Each period of Van Gogh’s life is represented here in its own “Movement”, showcasing the artists transition from the the rich colours and sombre subject matter of his fellow Dutch artists while in The Netherlands, to his bright, colour infused works while in Paris and Arles. The mood then taking a noticeable shift when changing to the Saint-Remy and Auvers-sur-Oise Movements, with the musical underscore becoming erratic and violent, all culminating in the sounds of a single gunshot and the room abruptly turning dark, representing the artists final days.
Get a preview of the exhibit here on our Instagram Story.
One section of the exhibit that is particularly intriguing was around the correspondence between Vincent and his brother Theo, which was expressed in a way that makes one think of Alice In Wonderland, as cartoonishly large paper letters are hurled towards the viewer as it caught up in a hurricane (representing the 902 letters that were kept posthumously from Van Gogh’s life).
The use of music to further express the artists emotions through each period of his life is expertly curated and the resulting effect is one of pure immersion. Whether it be Vivaldi, Bach, Schubert or Liszt, each composition perfectly captures the raw emotional state of a man tortured by his own mind, trying to find peach and beauty in the world when his own mind was fighting against him.
What Sensory 4 and Grande Exhibitions was created here is nothing more than spectacular. When they use the tagline “The Experience”, they mean every every sensory input, all coming together to offer a truly unique and immersive exploration of the legacy that is, Vincent Van Gogh.
Ticket & Event Information:
“Van Gogh Alive: The Experience at Royal Hall of Industries, Moore Park.”
Royal Hall of Industries, Entertainment Quarter, 1 Driver Avenue, Moore Park, NSW, 2021
Van Gogh Alive is presented at the Royal Hall of Industries. The Royal Hall of Industries is situated within the Moore Park Precinct, next to the Entertainment Quarter/Fox Studios and the Hordern Pavilion.
Monday-Tuesday: 11am – 7pm
Wednesday: 11am – 8pm
Thursday-Friday: 11am – 10pm
Saturday: 10am – 10pm
Sunday: 10am – 8pm
Last entry will be scheduled 1 hour prior to closing time. Open seven days a week, hours may vary during holiday weeks.
Wheelchair accessible. Two hour free car parking is available in the Wilson ‘EQ Carpark’. Getting There.
“Van Gogh Alive: The Experience” Will be on display from 18th September, 2020 – 22nd November 2020 at The Royal Hall of Industries, Entertainment Quarter.