Vincent Van Gogh - The Letters

Episodes

EpisodeTitleFirst
Broadcast
Comments
01
01*20091228

Mark Rylance and Julius D'Silva read from a new edition of Van Gogh's prodigious correspondence.

This selection illustrates the artist's contradictions and complexities: his self-doubt and his passionate ambition; his close bond with his brother Theo; and his sometimes troubled relationships with other family members and fellow artists.

What emerges above all is his overriding passion for his art.

Abridged by Doreen Estall.

Part of the BBC Christmas 2009 season.

Mark Rylance reads from a new edition of Van Gogh's prodigious correspondence.

02
02*20091229

Mark Rylance reads from a new edition of Van Gogh's prodigious correspondence.

Vincent begins his artistic studies in earnest under the guidance of the artist Anton Mauve.

He also embarks on a relationship with a pregnant prostitute, Christien, whom he decides to take under his wing.

But this brings him into conflict with his family.

Abridged by Doreen Estall.

Vincent begins his artistic studies in earnest under the guidance of Anton Mauve.

03
0320091230

Mark Rylance, Joseph Cohen-Cole and Julius D'Silva read from a new edition of Van Gogh's prodigious correspondence.

Vincent leaves Paris for the light and warmth of Arles in the south of France.

His new surroundings quickly revive both his spirits and his zest for painting, and he plans to establish a new artistic community there.

But his hopes to persuade Paul Gauguin to move south and join him in the little yellow house appear, at first, to be met with some resistance.

Abridged by Doreen Estall.

04
04*20091231

Mark Rylance, Joseph Cohen-Cole and Julius D'Silva read from a new edition of Van Gogh's prodigious correspondence.

Gauguin finally joins Vincent in the yellow house in Arles.

Initially the arrangement is beneficial to both artists but their relationship soon begins to deteriorate, in parallel with Vincent's state of mental health.

Abridged by Doreen Estall.

05
05 LAST*20100101

Mark Rylance, Joseph Cohen-Cole and Julius D'Silva read from a new edition of Van Gogh's prodigious correspondence.

Vincent is recovering in hospital following the incident in which he severed his own earlobe.

Gauguin has left the yellow house in Arles for good, but the two artists still correspond.

Although Vincent recovers physically from the incident, he decides to commit himself to a mental asylum only weeks after leaving hospital.

Abridged by Doreen Estall.

Vincent recovers in hospital following the incident in which he severed his own earlobe.