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Mark Harden's Artchive: CD-ROM Reviews

Vincent Van Gogh: The Complete Works

"Vincent Van Gogh: The Complete Works"

Created by David Brooks, of
The Vincent van Gogh Gallery

I have known David Brooks for a number of years now, and during the entire time (and before that time), he has been assiduously compiling this ultimate Van Gogh catalogue raisonné. Not only has he scanned each painting, drawing and sketch done by Van Gogh, he has meticulously researched and documented the provenance of each artwork.

I count David's achievement as one of the most important creations on the Internet - because he is not a formally trained art historian, his work is a symbol of the new opportunities for individual expression enabled by the Internet. You must understand that what David has done for this artist is a monumental accomplishment normally reserved for the elites of the art establishment, working on a grant or publisher's advance. Whereas David has toiled away on his own initiative and passion - creating a catalogue that even museum professionals accept as the final word on the art of Van Gogh. Indeed, the Detroit Institute of Art used The Vincent van Gogh Gallery web site for reference when installing a recent Van Gogh exhibition...museums will now find it much more efficient to utilize this database driven catalog raisonné.

This indispensable reference includes all 2,200 works in high quality JPG images. Due to his diligence in research, David has been able to produce the first color reproduction for many of the works. A user-friendly search engine easily locates, in addition to the images, full details of ownership and exhibition history. A full biography and timeline of Van Gogh rounds out this authoritative educational resource.

Technically, the CD-ROM is compatible with Windows 95 and higher (I believe a Mac version may be developed in the future). The text is available in English, Spanish, Dutch and Italian. The database runs off your CD-ROM drive, or can be installed onto a hard drive.

If you love Van Gogh, and especially if you want to support such an exemplary endeavor, I highly recommend that you add this CD-ROM to your art collection.

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