Vincent Van Gogh

Blossoming Almond Branch in a Glass, 1888, oil on canvas, the Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam.

The painting’s composition and color paid tribute to the Japanese aesthetic Van Gogh admired. He painted a sprig of an almond branch, which he forced into early flowering in a glass of water. The irregular pattern of the little branch, covered with pale, translucent blooms, gave him a subject that recalled the depiction of flowers in Japanese prints. The simple division of the silvery, violet background with a scarlet band pays tribute to the Japanese aesthetic.