Paul Gauguin (1848-1903)


'Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are Going? (1887-88)

‘Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We Going?’   
'D'où Venons Nous? Que Sommes Nous? Où Allons Nous? 

It was the title of one of Eugène Henri Paul Gauguin’s paintings and in many ways encapsulates the life of the man himself. He worked for a time as a stockbroker before he rejected ‘artificial and conventional’ European civilisation and set off in search of a tropical paradise where he could live the simple life. His travels took him to Panama, where he briefly worked on the construction of the canal, and then to Tahiti and the Marquesas Islands, where he painted many of the native girls and had affairs with several of them.


Spirit of the Dead Watching (1892)

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