In the letters he acknowledges that he has been in a bad place mentally, but that he feels he is getting better. Seeing all the other patients with similar issues made him feel like he was not alone. The constant in Van Gogh's life was painting, and he continued it during his stay at the asylum. He painted all aspects of his life: the doctors, the hallways, the flowers in the gardens, the wheat fields, and the trees.
The Mulberry Tree shows a tree from the garden of the asylum. It is centered on the canvas and is growing alone from a rocky hillside. The ground is made up of short quick brushstrokes of white and pale browns. It creates a strong contrast to the dark green and brown of the tree trunk.
To the right, you see more greens, indicating trees and growth in the distance. The leaves of the tree make up the majority of the painting, orange against the complementary color of the blue sky. It is that "superb autumn" that gave Vincent the bright orange leaves to paint. The ground and sky are made up of mostly straight diagonal brushstrokes, while the tree leaves are made up of curling spirals of orange and black, sometimes done with the handle of his brush.
Van Gogh reveled in the textural richness of oil paint. Called 'Impasto,' his application of the paint is so heavy in The Mulberry Tree in Autumn that it appears nearly three-dimensional. We cannot discern individual autumn leaves, for the tree limbs are like twisting yellow tentacles. The fiery branches reach upward and are framed by a brilliant blue sky created from thick, short strokes of blue paint.
The space surrounding the tree is rendered with a dynamism that echoes the tree's electric energy.
The Mulberry Tree in Autumn, 1889 by Vincent Van Gogh
Short, thick brush strokes of lighter yellow, with intermittent strokes of green, light brown, and white constitute the rocky field described in van Gogh's letter. However, Utilities Warehouse did not accept this. Her solicitor, Matthew Knight, said that after complaining to the Energy Ombudsman, the utility firm has been ordered to install a "check meter" at the restaurant which will reveal the true electricity usage.
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