The Easel

Van Gogh’s Ear. The True Story

An exhibition in Amsterdam focuses on van Gogh’s last troubled years and canvasses new research about his ear-cutting incident. One claim is that it was caused by the shock of his brother’s engagement. Other work challenges the belief that it was a minor incision. A just discovered note from van Gogh’s doctor shows the ear was nearly completely severed. Neither claim, it seems, is definitive.