Nieuw Amsterdam, October 1883 Vincent van Gogh (1853 - 1890)
oil on canvas,
27.8 cm x 36.5 cm
Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam (Vincent van Gogh Foundation)
Van Gogh painted these peasant women in the village of Nieuw-Amsterdam, in the rural Dutch province of Drenthe. He spent two months there in the autumn of 1883. The women are at work, probably gathering dried-out peat sods. Van Gogh was fascinated with the simple country life. He had already spent more than two years trying to 'examine and draw everything that's part of a peasant's life', he wrote.
While painting Women on the Peat Moor, he changed his mind about the scene a couple of times. For instance, research has shown that he first painted four figures rather than two.