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Van Gogh in Arles: The Artist City

“What would life be if we didn’t dare to take things in hand”
―Vincent Van Gogh

Vincent van Gogh arrived in Arles on February 20, 1888, after living in Paris for two years. During his stay in Arles, he created numerous works of painting and drawing. He envisioned an artist utopia in the south of artists working together in the warm weather, a move away from the business of the city towards a deeper connection with nature and sensuality. Vibrant colors and the connection to the earth-inspired his imagination along with other artists including Cézanne, Picasso, and Gauguin.

Van Gogh completed many of his most famous paintings while living in Arles, almost 200 works in a little over a year. Van Gogh was highly productive in Arles and developed the painting style used in his most famous works inspired by Japanese woodblock prints.

The Rock of Montmajour with Pine Trees, July 1888. Pencil, pen, reed pen, brush, and black ink on wove paper. 49,1 x 61 cm. Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam (Vincent van Gogh Foundation)

Arles Today

This quaint town is home to forward-thinking innovations in the arts. Art world luminaries flock to the event of the summer, an international photography festival. Here, exists a permanent landscape of architecture that is a mix of traditional French and Nouveau Modern, as well as world-class art galleries, boutique museums, avant-garde performance art, and quintessentially French cafe life. Ancient meets modern in contemporary Arles with the Luma Art Foundations contemporary program, the Van Gogh Museum, and the Arles Roman amphitheater.

Our neighborhood / Daily Life

Provence is relaxing and known for inspiring artists from all over the world. The region is famous for lavender, perfume, and rosé. Our program is located in Arles, near to many other fantastic cities, museums, and natural landscapes in Provence. We are at a bed and breakfast with comfortable rooms and communal kitchen space.

Our programs integrate living well into daily life, enjoying the sensual qualities of each day. We value-focused time to create and reflect balanced with elegant meals paired with a creative conversation.

Your Art Practice

Provence is a bounty of sensory stimuli, with the most beautiful produce, lavender, wine, and landscapes in the world. Natural wonders—including wild horses and flocks of flamingos—inspire both locals and visitors to view life with a renewed and joyful spirit. Where else can you make your own perfume, experience the landscapes made famous by Van Gogh and Matisse, while tasting Rosé from the unmistakable terroir? Join us, and immerse yourself in an artistic lifestyle from the moment of your arrival.

Impressionist and Modernist artists lived in Provence, with a vision of a utopian artist community. Experience an arts community with fellow travelers on this one-of-a-kind AIP journey,

Learn and live in Provence while painting, writing, drawing, and designing with local and international experts. Build relationships and make lasting connections on this rejuvenating journey.

Your Art Practice

France is full of rich creative expression, with opulent cities, decorative interiors, and a wide range of revolutions and movements. From the impressionists to postmodernists, France continues to push and define the avant-garde. French perspectives are deeply philosophical and poetic. Our courses embody the tradition of crafts and making, alongside thinking deeply.

Using the city and various spaces within it as exhibition space, site-specific course space, and an innovation platform, we aim to make a variety of work, sharing and exchanging perspectives, informed by the past and present. We have two exhibition/ classroom spaces near the hotel for classes, presentations, and residency workspace. Cross-course critique and dialogue between students and professionals is an essential component of our horizontal platform. Risk-taking and hard work are encouraged and nurtured. The French Beaux-Arts tradition had students learn painting, drawing, sculpture, and engraving, in addition to architecture. An understanding of classical and contemporary arts was essential to learning. We study the art, food, architecture, design, and culture of France with a holistic experience for all participants. Take a course, or work on self-directed creative projects in this immersive residency.

Return home with a body of work produced, and broadened cultural perspective.


Day 1 - Welcome to France! Arrive at the airport and be picked up by our private transportation from the Marseilles airport to the hotel located in Arles. We will check-in and relax and wait for the rest of the group to arrive. Spend your afternoon relaxing and getting settled. Take a walk and chat with other guests. We have a nightly meet and greet followed by a celebration dinner. We have multi-course dinners made with local produce and ingredients.

Day 2 - Wake up in Arles and walk to breakfast. We will gather in the studio space to introduce AIP and get to know the teachers, group organizers, and talk about our goals for the trip and why we all came. Bring your supplies up to the classroom (all participants bring supplies with them so they are prepared to work right away) and meet with your class groups. Creative residents can set up a workspace and start working right away. Gather at 1 pm for lunch and take the afternoon to work on art, writing, etc. You will have open time each day to be in the moment and share experiences with the community.

Day 3,4 & 5 - Wake up to another wonderful morning, meet for class followed by lunch and

spend the afternoon working/ relaxing. Meet briefly then proceed to presentations by

professors and AIP trip leaders about their work and other creative topics. Arrive at dinner

excited and chat with other guests, asking questions and learning about each other and what interests you share.

Day 6 - Spend the Day in Marseille. See the city with an AIP walking tour followed by

Independent opportunities. Eat out on your own.

Day 7 - Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner shared, and a Mid Term Review of work of all courses -

professors and residents. Review, look, and discuss!

Day 8 - Arles exploring, seeing sites, and shopping.

Day 9 - Shared meals, course sessions, group gatherings, and time to create!

Day 10 - Open day to go into Arles or work. No class meetings.

Day 11 & 12 - Shared meals, course sessions, group gatherings, and time to create! Prep for

the final show.

Day 13 - Breakfast followed by our final exhibition. Tour the studio spaces as a group to see

and explore everyone’s projects. Pack up your supplies and suitcases, enjoy a fantastic

celebration and farewell dinner!

Day 14 - Wake up, enjoy breakfast, and ride the private transport back to depart! If you’re staying longer, enjoy the rest of your trip.

*Note this schedule including dates is subject to change due to local weather, force majeure, or new opportunities that better suit the needs of the group. This will help you get an accurate picture of what your experience will be like.


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