A previously unknown self-portrait of Vincent van Gogh was discovered behind another painting by the artist as a result of a chance find.
You’ll need x-ray vision to see the new Vincent van Gogh.
According to Storyful, curators at the National Galleries of Scotland have found a self-portrait of the famous artist that had been hidden for centuries.
“Moments like this are incredibly rare,” says Professor Francis Fowl, senior curator of French art at the National Gallery of Scotland.It is reported by the New York Post.
Gog’s self-portrait, infamous for cutting off part of his left ear in 1888, wearing a brimmed hat and ear still intact, hints that he may have been created in his early years.
The portrait was found during an x-ray examination of Van Gogh’s “Head of a Peasant Woman” for the Edinburgh Gallery’s summer exhibition titled “A Taste for Impressionism”.
According to the galleries, it was on the back of the painting, covered in a thick layer of cardboard and glue. This was a practice that Van Gogh was known for, as he decided to save money and paint on the other side of his canvases instead of painting on top of his other paintings.
Whether the gallery will be able to separate the artist’s portrait from his painting is still a matter of debate. Experts believe that this can be done, but it will take a lot of time and patience not to spoil what is on the other side.
The National Galleries plan to keep the portrait in their possession as Fowle said it is “an incredible gift for Scotland that will forever be in the care of the National Galleries”. She said that it will be shown at the summer exhibition, which will be held from July 30 to November 13, 2022.
This story originally appeared on New York Post and has been reproduced with permission.
Originally published as Van Gogh’s self-portrait is hidden behind another painting