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SWT astronomers sleuth van Gogh "Moonrise" mystery

Of all the works by Vincent van Gogh--and the Dutch master produced more than 2,000 paintings, drawings and sketches in his lifetime--the painting Moonrise has remained one of the most mysterious and enigmatic. Until now.
Astronomers at Southwest Texas State University have applied their unique brand of forensic astronomy to the puzzle, shedding new light on the celestial scene: Van Gogh painted Moonrise July 13, 1889 at the Saint-Paul monastery in Saint-Rémy, France. At 9:08 p.m., local mean time, to be precise.

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Image courtesy of Kroller-Muller Museum, The Netherlands.

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A team of art sleuths has turned to astronomy and mathematical formulas to crack a string of historical conundrums posed by the works of Shakespeare, Chaucer and Van Gogh.
This week the experts will share evidence from 50 "cases", including the exact time at which the Dutch artist painted Moonrise, a canvas that was once thought to have portrayed a sunset, and details about the blood-red sky in The Scream by Edvard Munch.
The scientists from Texas State University have identified the "same star that's westward of the pole" in the opening scenes of Shakespeare's Hamlet as the Tycho star or supernova of 1572.

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Title: The Astronomy of Van Gogh's "Starry Night"
Authors: Boime, A.

The post-impressionism painting Starry Night was painted by Vincent van Gogh in southern France in 1889.

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Credit: Vincent van Gogh

The Real Van Gogh: The Artist and His Letters
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Vincent Van Gogh
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Australia gallery officials have announced that a painting, entitled Head of a Man,  that had been thought to be by the Dutch master Vincent Van Gogh has been proven to be by another artist.
The painting  is owned by the National Gallery of Victoria in Melbourne who acquired it in 1940 and had been valued at around £10.5m.


The National Galley of Victoria has rejected claims that a $25 million Vincent Van Gogh painting it has lent to an exhibition in Scotland is a fake.
Read more  (August 7, 2006)

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