He himself wanted to be hardworking and upright in his job like a shoemaker, so maybe therefore he painted shoes, but he painted also sunflowers because he himself was one of them. Like a sunflower he collected the solar fire of love in his heart in order people to have been able to warm themselves by it until today, 120 years after that July 29 of 1890, although 10 years earlier, in July 1880 , Vincent had written to Theo,
"You can carry a big fire in your soul and no one comes to warm oneself by it; the people passing by see nothing but a little smoke that goes up the chimney, and go further , each of them- one's own way ."
The sunny sunflower fire in his soul was burning for the miners in Borinage, for them- the tormented, he descended into the most dangerous shaft, for them- the forgotten- he faced against the owners of the mines, who "give the jobs to the men thinking like them”, in opposing to them never to be able to get a job from them. There was no job to be given to the man who stretched the sail "Love" on his boat rather than the sail "Greed for money and ambition” (from his letters from November 1881).
"When the greed for money and the ambition in a man are no less than his love, then I think, not everything about this man is in order." (November 1881)
Not everything was in order with these men because “to believe in the existence of a person, they must see this person's means of subsistence, and the existence of that person alone is not a proof to them that the means of subsistence of this person are real." (November 1881)
To show these gentlemen that his means of subsistence existed and he himself existed , too, he had to show them "his artist's paw",
“And then we have to use that paw to that extent to which our strength allows us.”(November 1881)
And he used his artist's paw and the sun in his heart more than his strength allowed him, risking his life, in order all people - rich and poor, hard-working and idle, to be able to understand what painting is, to understand that,
"The figure of a digger- some furrows in the field, a view to the sands, the sea and the sky- are serious subjects , yet so difficult, but so beautiful that it is worth pledging your life to transmit the poetry that is hidden in them.” (August 1882)
And later people would not only see and understand this poetry, but also would not be able to imagine their world without it, in the same way as they could not imagine their life without love, which in November 1881 Vincent wrote about,
"To live without love is immoral and sinful."
Vincent believed that life ” in the flesh” was truer and more important than the life “in pictures”, to bear children -more important than to “bear” pictures. Maybe therefore he praised so highly the "rough, rural realism”. He did not “embark” on dreams and abstra