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Mondays, October 21 – November 11, 6 – 8pm


Vincent van Gogh. The Smoker, 1888. The Barnes Foundation, BF119. Public Domain.

$220; members $198
(4 classes)

About the Class

Delve into the life and work of Vincent van Gogh, one of the greatest, and most mythologized, painters of the modern era. Poverty, institutionalization, and self-mutilation are all part of Van Gogh’s story, but over the years these factors have had an outsize influence on how we understand his paintings. Van Gogh’s art was driven by ideas—about nature, authenticity, and spirituality—rather than simply fueled by psychosis. Using special high-res images, we will zoom in on dozens of canvases, studying Van Gogh’s brushwork as we follow his career from his beginnings in Holland to his final, brilliant years in Arles and Auvers-sur-Oise.

The class is online-only. More about online classes.

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Barnes classes will:

  • Sharpen your observational and critical thinking skills.
  • Improve your ability to communicate about art.
  • Deepen your appreciation for cultures and histories outside your own.

See all classes.


Martha Lucy

Lucy is the deputy director for research, interpretation and education at the Barnes. As an art historian, she specializes in modern European art and visual culture. She is the coauthor of Renoir in the Barnes Foundation and has published articles and essays on topics ranging from the early charcoals of Odilon Redon to contemporary installation art.

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“I learned so much in this class, especially things I would not have considered or did not learn when taking art history classes in college.” Portraiture at the Barnes: From the 15th Century to Modernism with Laura Watts

“Kaelin is an amazing professor and has so much knowledge about the collection and the Barnes Foundation. She makes the content interesting and encourages your ideas and questions.” The Traditions of Art with Kaelin Jewell

“I love Cézanne’s art. I am a neuroscientist and always use Cézanne as an example of an artist when I teach vision and the art of seeing. This class helped me appreciate Cézanne’s work even more [and] was very engaging.” Close-Looking Immersion: Cézanne’s Ginger Jar with William Perthes

“The instructor was amazing! She was extremely knowledgeable, friendly, funny, and open to questions. She brought in outside resources and made herself available via email for questions between classes. I would take anything she teaches.” The Impressionists: Friends and Family with Caterina Pierre