Scientists have derived the “formula for success” of Van Gogh’s paintings

Researchers from the U.S. have applied algorithms close to the artificial intelligence to analyze more than 800,000 works by famous artists, resulting in a “formula for success” of paintings by Van Gogh and other artists. Nature Communications writes about it.

In 2018, experts at Northwestern University in the United States used statistical tools to establish that there were relatively short periods in the careers of many artists when they created their most significant works. Researchers called such periods “hot streaks.”

A new study, led by Dashun Wang, has identified the patterns that underlie “hot streaks” in artists’ careers. The idea was born when Dr. Wang visited the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam – the scholar noticed that the paintings “Starry Night,” “Sunflowers” and “Bedroom in Arles” were created in a short period – between 1888 and 1890. Van Gogh’s earlier works were much more realistic, but the artist has gone down in history as the author of these paintings in the first place.

“Analysis of huge datasets has shown that the hot streaks are the result of years of research and experimentation. First, the artist spends many years exploring different styles and ideas, and then there is a relatively brief hot streak in his career in which he creates his major works,” says Vana.