About This Artwork

Vincent van Gogh
Dutch, 1853-1890

Fishing in Spring, the Pont de Clichy (Asnières), 1887

Oil on canvas
19 7/8 x 23 5/8 in. (50.5 x 60 cm)

Gift of Charles Deering McCormick, Brooks McCormick, and the Estate of Roger McCormick, 1965.1169

In technique, Fishing in Spring is a testament to Vincent van Gogh’s friendship with Paul Signac. Van Gogh had seen works by Signac and Georges Seurat in the spring of 1886 at the final Impressionist exhibition. Signac was an eloquent spokesman for Seurat’s pioneering Neo-Impressionism, explaining it as a natural development of Impressionism. Under Signac’s influence, Van Gogh’s palette brightened, his brushstrokes became more varied, and his subject matter expanded. The setting of this work is the Seine River at the Pont de Clichy, near Asnières, where Van Gogh and Signac painted together on several occasions.

— Permanent collection label

Exhibition, Publication and Ownership Histories

Exhibition History

Amsterdam, Stedelijk Museum, Vincent van Gogh en zijn tijdgenooten, September 6-November 2, 1930, cat. 29.

New York, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Van Gogh: Paintings and Drawings: A Special Loan Exhibition, 1949, cat. 51 (ill.), traveled to The Art Institute of Chicago, 1950.

Auckland City Art Gallery, Van Gogh in Auckland, August–September, 1975, cat 5 (ill.), traveled to New South Wales, Sydney, National Gallery of Victoria; Melbourne, Australia, October–December, 1975.

Toyko, The National Museum of Western Art, Masterpieces of World Art From American Museums From Ancient Egyptian to Contemporary Art, September 11-October 17, 1976, cat. 47 (ill.), traveled to Kyoto, National Museum, November 2–December 5, 1976.

London, Royal Academy of Arts, Post-Impressionism: Cross-Currents in European Paintings, November 17, 1979-March 16, 1980, cat. 96 (ill.), traveled to Washington D.C., The National Gallery, May 25-September 1, 1980.

Albi, Musée Toulouse-Lautrec, Trésors impressionnistes du Musée de Chicago, June 27-August 31, 1980, cat. 28 (ill.).

Memphis, The Dixon Gallery and Gardens, The Genius of van Gogh, May 9-June 13, 1982, cat. 12 (ill.).

Tokyo, Seibu Museum of Art, The Impressionist Tradition: Masterpieces from The Art Institute of Chicago, October 18-December 17, 1986, cat. 44 (ill.), traveled to Fukuoka Art Museum, January 5-February 2, 1986 and Kyoto Municipal Museum of Art, March 4-April 13, 1986.

Paris, Musée d’Orsay, Van Gogh à Paris, February 2-May 15, 1988, cat. 30 (ill.).

Leningrad, Hermitage and Moscow, Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts, From Delacroix to Matisse: Great French Paintings From the XIX century to the Beginning of the XXth century From Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and the Art Institute of Chicago, 1988, cat. 22 (ill.).

London, The National Gallery, Seurat and The Bathers, July 2-September 28, 1997, cat 87 (ill.).

Martigny, Fondation Pierre Gianadda, Van Gogh, June 21-November 26, 2000, cat. 39 (ill.).

The Art Institute of Chicago, Van Gogh and Gauguin: The Studio of the South, The Art Institute of Chicago, September 22, 2001-January 13, 2002, cat. 18 (ill.), traveled to The Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam, February 9-June 6, 2002.

New York, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Cézanne to Picasso Ambroise Vollard, Patron of the Avant-Garde, September 13, 2006-January 7, 2007, cat. 116 (ill.), traveled to The Art Institute of Chicago, February 17-May 13, 2007 and Musée d’Orsay, Paris, June 18-Spetember 16, 2007.

Fort Worth, Tex., Kimbell Museum of Art, The Impressionists: Master Paintings from the Art Institute of Chicago, June 29–November 2, 2008, cat. 55 (ill.).

Basel, Switzerland, Kunstmuseum Basel, Vincent van Gogh- Between Earth and Heaven: The Landscapes, 2009, cat. 21, p. 24, p. 93, p. 102, p. 105, p. 155. p. 175.

Williamstown, Massachusetts, The Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, Van Gogh and Nature, June 13-September 13, 2015, cat. 20.

Publication History

J. B. de La Faille, L’Oeuvre de Vincent van Gogh, Catalogue Raisonné vol. 1 (Paris, 1928), no. 354, pl. 47.

Rene Huyghe, “Vincent van Gogh: Sa vie et son oeuvre,” L’Amour de L’Art 18 (1937), p. 11 (ill. 31).

Frederick A. Sweet, “Great Chicago Collectors,” Apollo 84 (September 1966), p. 206.

The Art Institute of Chicago, Annual Report 1965-1966 (Chicago, 1966), pp. 5, 9, 27 (ill.).

Mark Roskill, Van Gogh, Gauguin and the Impressionist Circle (New York, 1970), p. 45, pl. 22.

Bogomila Welsh-Ovcharov, Vincent van Gogh: His Paris Period 1886-1888 (Utrecht and The Hague, 1976), pp. 95, 233, 296 (ill.).

Paolo Lecaldano, L’opera pittorica completa di Van Gogh e i suoi nessi grafici: Da Etten a Parigi vol. 1 (Milan, 1977), no. 382, p. 115 (ill.).

Jan Hulsker, The Complete van Gogh: Paintings, Drawings, Sketches (New York, 1980), p. 280, no. 1270.

Herbert Henkels, “Cézanne en Van Gogh in het Rijksmuseum voor Moderne Kunst in Amsterdam: de collectie van Cornelis Hoogendijk (1866-1911),” Bulletin van het Rijksmuseum 41, 3-4 (1933), p. 228, pl. 101.

Chris Stolwijk and Han Veenenbos, The Account Book of Theo van Gogh and Jo van Gogh-Bonger (Amsterdam and Leiden, 2002), p. 143.

The Age of Impressionism at the Art Institute of Chicago (New Haven and London, 2008), cat. 55, p. 120 (ill.).

Louis van Tilborgh, et al., "Weave matching and dating of Van Gogh's paintings: an interdisciplinary approach," Burlington Magazine (February 2012), p. 114 (color ill.), 115.

Christies, "Maurice de Vlaminch (1876-1958): Les régates á Bougival," Impressionist/Modern Evening Sale: Wednesday 20 June 2012 7.00 PM. London: Christies, 2012.

Richard Kendall, Sjraar van Heugten, and Chris Stolwijk, "Van Gogh and Nature," Clark Art Institute, Williamstown, Massachusetts, distributed by Yale University Press, New Haven and London, Fig. 89, Cat. 20 (2015)

Ownership History

Johanna van Gogh-Bonger, the artist’s sister in law, Amsterdam; probably sent to Ambroise Vollard, Paris in November 1896 [see Stolwijk and Veenenbos 2000, see also New York 2006-7]. Cornelis Hoogendijk (died 1911), The Hague by 1906; by inheritance to his sister, Mme. van Blaaderen-Hoogendijk, Amsterdam, possibly on loan to Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, 1927 [according to information kindly provided by Louis van Tilborg of Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam in a letter dated February 28, 2000, copy in curatorial file]; T. van Blaaderen, Bussum by 1946; sold to E. J. Van Wisselingh, Amsterdam on June 24, 1946 [Wisselingh stockbook no. 6858: “La pecheur [?] au printemps,” see van Tilborg’s letter citied above and New York 2006-7]; sold to Katz Art Gallery, Bussum and The Hague also on June 24, 1946 [according to New York 2006-7]. Knoedler and Co., New York. Mr. and Mrs. Chauncey McCormick, Chicago by 1949; by inheritance to their children, Charles Deering McCormick, Brooks McCormick, and Roger McCormick, Chicago; given to the Art Institute, 1965.

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