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Paintings by Jason Brooks on display for the first time at the Van Gogh Museum from tomorrow

The three artworks are inspired by Vincent van Gogh; two were made especially for the presentation at the museum.

Jason Brooks (1968), ’I am’, 2018-2019
Jason Brooks (1968), ’I am’, 2018-2019

Since 2014, the Van Gogh Museum has invited modern and contemporary artists to present work at the museum as part of the Van Gogh Inspires series. The latest exhibitor is the English artist Jason Brooks (1968), who shot to international fame in the 1990s as a member of the Young British Artists (YBAs) group.

Brooks produced two new paintings especially for the occasion: I am and The Poet’s Death, which he created after studying Van Gogh’s work. Van Gogh was also a source of inspiration for the third work on display, To John Clare, particularly his way of looking and painting.

Adriaan Dönszelmann, Managing Director and acting Director of the Van Gogh Museum: ‘It is wonderful to see how Vincent van Gogh is still so inspirational. And to have the opportunity to exhibit two new artworks by a prominent artist such as Jason Brooks for the first time at our museum is a great honour’.

The artworks will be on display from tomorrow until 19 January 2020 on the 3rd floor of the permanent collection, with thanks to the Marlborough Gallery.

Van Gogh inspireert: Jason Brooks

‘Painters understand nature […] and teach us to see’.
Vincent van Gogh to his brother Theo, January 1874

Vincent van Gogh & Jason Brooks

In his work, Brooks focuses not on what he paints, but rather how he paints it. Nowadays, millions of images are consumed on a daily basis, but – in the words of Brooks – ‘looking is not always seeing’. Painting can help us to learn to look more closely at the world around us. In his work, what appears to be thick paint is actually an airbrushed illusion.

Brooks shares Van Gogh’s fundamental interest in painting technique, paint and colour. ‘How I see it is that every single one of Van Gogh’s brushstrokes is carefully considered, even though they appear impulsive. That’s also how I work’. With Van Gogh as his inspiration, Brooks seeks a new visual language for painting.

About Jason Brooks

Jason Brooks (1968) became famous in the 1990s as a member of the Young British Artists. At the time, this group of artists – which also included major names such as Damien Hirst and Tracey Emin – dominated the international art scene. Brooks explores in his work how art can change our perception of the everyday, with his working method, choice of colours and paint surface all playing a major role.


On Friday 18 October, Jason Brooks will be present in the gallery to briefly introduce his works and explain how Van Gogh inspires him. The lecture is on location next to the artworks on the 3rd floor of the museum, and begins at 14.00. Entrance is free with a ticket to the museum.

Presentations of work by modern and contemporary artists

The temporary exhibition of Brooks’ works is part of a series of presentations of modern and contemporary art held in the final gallery of the permanent collection at the Van Gogh Museum. In these presentations, the Van Gogh Museum reveals how many generations of artists have been inspired by Van Gogh’s work.

Since 2014, these small exhibitions have featured paintings by Francis Bacon, Willem de Kooning, Peter Doig, John Chamberlain and recently, Pieter Laurens Mol and Matthew Day Jackson. These modern and contemporary artists show how Van Gogh inspires them and, in turn, influence how Van Gogh is seen both now and in the future. Jason Brooks’ richly layered paintings are a powerful and inspiring continuation of the Van Gogh Inspires series.

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