Born on 30th of March, 1853 in Groot Zundert, a small town in the Brabant, the southern Netherlands – Holland at the time – Vincent Van Gogh was destined to become the most popular post-impressionist painter of all ages, alas only appreciated after his tragic death.

He was named after his brother who died exactly the same day a year before and arguably this naming had a huge negative impact on all his life.

His father Theodorus Van Gogh (1822-1885) was a minister of Dutch Reformed Church and it seems that Vincent became very much interested on his father’s profession which as the result years later he chose to work as a preacher in a mining region in Belgium known as Borinage and even worked for free after he was dismissed.

Vincent had 2 brothers named Theodorus and Cor and three sisters named Elisabeth, Anna and Wil. Theodorus who was 4 years younger than Vincent played a very significant roll in his life. Theo not only financially supported Vincent throughout his life but he was the one who encouraged Vincent to take up painting seriously. It is widely accepted that if it hadn’t been because of Theo’s support the world would not had such a remarkable painter.

Having lived more than a year together Vincent ended his relationship with Clasina Maria Hoornik and a year later he fell in love with Margot Begemann, his neighbor’s daughter who was ten years older than him but it didn’t result a happy marriage either as both families opposed their relation.

Vincent started his career as an employee for the art dealer Goupil & Co. Later the company sent him to London where he increasingly got interested in religion. Later he was sent to Paris where the company found him troublesome and dismissed him. In 1880 he started taking painting lessons seriously.

Some of the most famous and expensive paintings in the world were created by Van Gogh, in fact four of top ten most expensive paintings are Van’s work, sadly he didn’t have much luck selling his works during his life time which left him a poor artist.

“Red Vineyard at Arles”, the only painting that Vincent managed to sell before his death earned him just 400 Francs – roughly the equivalent of $1000 today – was painted in 1888 and exhibited in 1890 in Brussels.

The most expensive painting by Vincent is “Portrait of Dr. Gachet”. Gachet, a hubby painter himself, was the doctor who took care of Vincent during the last months of his life in Auvers-sur-Oise, France. As with many paintings of Van this one has two versions, one of which was sold for $82.5 millions in 1990. The current estimate of value is $136.1 millions.

It is believed that Vincent suffered from insanity and depression all his life which ended in committing suicide several times. Finally on 27 July 1890 he shot himself in the chest which caused incurable injuries that killed him two days later. He left behind him many highly respected and extremely expensive paintings which changed the course of Neo-Impressionism forever.