When Utrecht-based chef Ernst de Witte visited the van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam final yr, he observed one thing wasn’t fairly proper on one of many wall labels. De Witte discovered that van Gogh’s still-life portray “Purple Cabbages and Onions” (1887) was erroneously named; the “onions” represented, he noticed, have been truly heads of garlic.
Decided to set the document straight, de Witte despatched a message to the museum together with his principle. The establishment “took it severely from the beginning,” he informed Hyperallergic, and requested for proof of his conviction. De Witte and his spouse developed a PowerPoint presentation evaluating the portray in query with one other work of van Gogh’s, “Still life around a plate of onions” (1889), together with an evaluation of the painter’s dealing with of each greens. He additionally filmed a video evaluating and contrasting various kinds of garlic and onions by form and colour and mapped out the refined strains van Gogh painted to delineate the clove segments beneath the garlic pores and skin. Other than being a chef, de Witte can also be a visible artist, enabling him to use his experience in each fields to make such an evaluation.
The museum introduced de Witte’s proof to its analysis crew, which finally decided that he was appropriate a couple of months later. They even consulted an impartial researcher who validated de Witte’s declare, prompting the establishment to repair the error on each its wall textual content and on-line collections document. The portray is now known as “Purple Cabbages and Garlic” due to de Witte’s eager eye.
Impressed by each the portray and this expertise, de Witte developed a crimson cabbage and garlic dish for his Utrecht-based restaurant, Feu, consisting of a poached crimson cabbage positioned over a creme of puffed garlic and drizzled with a French dressing of lemon balm, tarragon, and van Gogh’s favourite liquor, absinthe.
“As quickly because the French dressing is available in contact with the crimson cabbage parts, the colours begin to fade, identical to the crimson/blue pigments in van Gogh’s work,” de Witte wrote to Hyperallergic. “Our visitors are in love with it, particularly mixed with the story and the beer brewed with absinthe we pair it with.” The dish is on restaurant Feu’s menu by way of Might, and diners who embody “#vanGogh” on their on-line reservations can pattern it on the home.