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Vincent van Gogh. The Starry Night. Saint Rémy, June 1889 15

Oil on canvas, 29 x 36 1/4" (73.7 x 92.1 cm). Acquired through the Lillie P. Bliss Bequest (by exchange). Conservation was made possible by the Bank of America Art Conservation Project

Narrator: This is a popular painting at the museum, so it might be crowded. See if you can find a good place to see The Starry Night.

In this painting, the moon is out and shining bright, and the stars are glowing. Which star shines the brightest?

The whole sky seems to be alive and moving with swirls and waves of color. With your eyes, follow one of the swirls in the sky.

Do you think the swirls are the wind blowing?—or clouds passing?—or is this just how the artist, Vincent van Gogh, saw the sky in his imagination? Van Gogh once wrote a letter to his brother saying: “Looking at the sky always makes me dream.”

Notice how many different colors of blue make up the sky. Some artists blend paint colors together. But Van Gogh painted without mixing the colors first. Look closely to see the brushstrokes and the thick paint on the canvas.

With such an amazing sky overhead, you might not notice the little village below, which van Gogh could see from his window. What do you think is going on inside the houses? Share your ideas with a friend or family member.