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BWW Review: VAN GOGH: THE IMMERSIVE EXPERIENCE, The Old Stable Yard

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It’s difficult to say if it's worth the ticket price, but it’s a lovely night out for the artistically inclined.

BWW Review: VAN GOGH: THE IMMERSIVE EXPERIENCE, The Old Stable Yard

Vincent Van Gogh's is one of those life stories that we love to retell. There are countless museums, films and documentaries cataloguing the tormented and tragically suicidal post-impressionist painter, and the Doctor Who episode dedicated to him is absolutely tear-jerking. His art is marked by bold and theatrical colour choices, with each and every brushstroke becoming a controlled and defined action to depict his own version of what he saw.

Dead by his own hand at 37 years old, he hardly ever sold any pieces while he was alive. His addictive personality didn't make things any easier either, leading to an unstable and rambunctious relationship with his environments and friendships. One wonders what he would think of London's latest offering of his craft, an immersive exhibit of his most memorable works - or of the overwhelming response and worldwide fame he's gained since his death, too, for all that matters.

The experience has run across the world before landing in London, and it's currently showing in York and Leicester too. A former horse and carriage storage facility near Old Spitalfields Market is now the canvas for the newest leap into Van Gogh's masterpieces. From didactical but entertaining briefs on him and his troubles and a few classical reproductions, audiences are taken to the selling point of the event: a virtual reality room and 360-degree digital show of his most famous paintings.


The latter projections cover 15,000 square feet of surface and make for a romantic artistic adventure, taking the audience into a day in the life of Vincent. We wake up in his Bedroom in Arles and walk through fields and villages reproduced in a digitised attempt at his style.

From sunflowers to sleeping peasants, it makes for a delightful 10 minutes - though it's a shame it doesn't come with the standard ticket and is charged extra. Children and adults alike can also have their go at his most recognisable pieces in a special art room. Patrons are given a set of crayons and encouraged to go wild; the end results proudly hang on the walls and can be quite impressive, all things considered.

It's difficult to say if Van Gogh - The Immersive Experience is worth the ticket price and its variations according to the time slots, but it's a lovely night out for the artistically inclined. It's most definitely not the best or the most comprehensive Van Gogh exhibition, but it is an impressive combination of technology and traditional artistry.

Van Gogh - The Immersive Experience is now open to the public.


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