Bowl with Zinnias and Other FlowersEnlarge image

Bowl with Zinnias and Other Flowers, 1886

Vincent van Gogh
Dutch, 1853 - 1890
oil on canvas
50.2 x 61 cm
Purchased 1951
National Gallery of Canada (no. 5808)

After working as an art dealer, schoolteacher, and missionary, Van Gogh decided to become an artist in 1880 and spent several years painting and sketching in the Netherlands. Intrigued by the Impressionists, he moved to Paris in March 1886 and lived with his brother Theo, an art dealer. "Still-life: Flowers (II)" is among a group of still-lifes painted that summer in which Van Gogh shed the darker palette of his Dutch period and explored colour theories then current among the Parisian avant-garde. In July 1886, Theo wrote to their mother that Vincent was "mainly painting flowers - with the object to put a more lively color into his next pictures . . . . He has acquaintances who give him a collection of flowers every week which serve him as models."


– Signed l.r.: 'Vincent';

– Inscribed in pencil on back l.l.: 'No 2 / v G';

– Inscribed on stretcher: 'MEU (…) OLDENBOOM';

– Label inscribed: '132 / 49'

– Torn Agnew's label

– Torn label: 'H. Gonkel Jr. / Encadreur (...)'

– Label from 1947 Basle exhibition, no. 1058.


1893–still in 1948
Alida Oldenboom-Luetkemann, Amsterdam, The Netherlands [1]

Alex Reid & Lefèvre Ltd., London, UK [2]

Thomas Agnew & Sons, Ltd., London, UK, purchased from Reid & Lefèvre [3]

National Gallery of Canada, purchased from Agnew & Sons [4]


The main source for this provenance is J. B. de la Faille's catalogue raisonné, cat. no. 251 [de la Faille, J.B. "L'Oeuvre de Vincent van Gogh." Paris 1928, Meulenhoff ed., Amsterdam 1970]. Exceptions and other supporting documents are noted.

[1] Chris Stolweijk and Han Veenenbos identify the work as the one listed in Theo van Gogh's and Jo van Gogh-Bonger's account book as sold to Ms. Oldenboom in 1893 [Stolweijk, Chris and Han Veenenbos. “The account book of Theo van Gogh and Jo van Gogh-Bonger.“ Van Gogh Museum Amsterdam, 2002, p.168]. In the 1948 catalogue of the Venice Biennale, Ms. Oldenboom is still listed as the owner of the work[“Catalogo 24. Biennale di Venezia.” Venice; Edizione Serenissima, 1948, p. 220].Alida Oldenboom-Luetkemann was a soprano who worked with Mahler.

[2] The work was acquired from Reid & Lefèvre by Agnew & Sons on Dec. 8, 1949 [e-mail from Venetia Harlow, archivist, Agnew& Sons, London, to A.Kausch, NGC Provenance Research Project, June 19, 2008, NGC curatorial file].

[3] Negotiations between the NGC and Agnew about the acquisition of the painting started in March 1950. The work was officially acquired on October 2, 1950 [Accession records, NGC curatorial file].

[4] Accession log [NGC curatorial file].

Provenance completed



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