December 23, 2021
Reflections, Day 73
“What would life be if we had no courage to attempt anything?”
—Vincent van Gogh
“I don’t know anything with certainty, but seeing the stars makes me dream.”
― Vincent van Gogh
A visit to the van Gogh Immersive Experience exhibit in Atlanta was one of Dekie’s birthday presents. We had tickets and reservations for yesterday, Wednesday, December 22. There has been a lot of hype about the show and I didn’t really know what to expect, but at the end of the visit, all I could say was,
“Wow. That was amazing. It was a totally new experience for me.”
The exhibit is housed in a reconditioned warehouse which is a part of the long-neglected “Pullman Yard,” part of the old railroad lines.
The tour was in a series of rooms that at first resembled a traditional art gallery or museum.
But then I noticed that the paintings were changing as I watched. In one cubicle was a painting of a vase. As I watched, the painting slowly morphed into another painting which changed into yet another. It went through a number of paintings, but the vase remained the same size and shape through all of them.
One of van Gogh’s well known paintings is “Bedroom at Arles.” I saw the painting from across the room. It was huge. Dekie and I walked over to the painting and found that we could walk inside the painting and even sit on the bed. This was the room where the artist lived during a most productive period of his short life. The door opened on gardens and a picturesque town.
We went through another door to find a large, cavernous room with a black ceiling that must have been 30 feet above the floor. There were benches and chairs. We sat, not knowing what to expect and then noticed that the walls were changing. In the picture are Dekie’s father, mother, and niece, who is visiting from Geneva. The walls showed van Gogh’s paintings that wrapped around the room. The paintings changed and slowly merged from one image into another. At one point, a large murder of crows flew down out of one corner and toured the room. The art had come to life accompanied by music and a small amount of commentary.
And as this part of the tour ended, we found another door that led into an experience like I never imagined. And that will be a story for tomorrow.
We didn’t know what to expect—and we found that there was no way we could have known what to expect.