First Floor


The first floor showcases Van Gogh’s paintings, mostly chronologically. 

This includes his early, darker works like ‘The Potato Eaters’, transitioning to the brighter palette adopted during his time in Arles, exemplified by one of the ‘Sunflowers’ series. 

Van Gogh’s evolution towards a more abstract approach to nature, as seen during his stay in the asylum at St Rémy, is also on display here. 

This period includes works like ‘Wheatfield with a Reaper,’ ‘Undergrowth,’ and ‘Irises.’ 

The floor concludes with his final expressionistic works painted in Auvers-sur-Oise, including the notable Wheatfield with Crows.

Top 3 Van Gogh Museum Tickets 

Best time to visit

Entry Ticket

  • Timed entry ticket
  • Access to all exhibitions
  • Wheelchair accessible
Best time to visit

Museum + Canal Cruise

  • Timed entry ticket
  • 1 hr Amsterdam Canal Cruise
  • Audio guide in 19 languages
Best time to visit

Entry Ticket + Guided Tour

  • Skip the line entry ticket 
  • Live tour guide
  • Duration 1.5 hours

The Potato Eater

The Potato's Eaters

On the Van Gogh Museum’s first floor, there’s a painting called “The Potato Eaters.” 

Vincent Van Gogh created this artwork to show off his skills in painting people. 

He deliberately chose a tricky way to arrange the scene.

In the painting, the farmers have rough faces and hands that look tired from hard work. 

Van Gogh wanted to capture the tough reality of farm life. 

He used colors that resemble the earth, like the dusty skin of an unpeeled potato.

Instead of focusing on making everything look perfect, Van Gogh cared more about the message of the painting than getting all the details right. 

Even though some people criticized the painting for its mistakes and dark colors, Van Gogh was really happy with how it turned out.

Today, “The Potato Eaters” is one of Van Gogh’s most famous pieces, known and admired by many people.


The Sunflowers

On the Van Gogh Museum’s first floor, you’ll find some of Van Gogh’s most famous paintings – the Sunflowers. 

He painted these bright and beautiful sunflowers in the French city of Arles in 1888 and 1889.

Using three shades of yellow, Van Gogh painted these sunflowers in a vase on five big canvases. 

What’s cool is that he wanted to show that you can use lots of different shades of just one color (yellow, in this case) and still make a stunning picture.

One of these sunflower paintings held a special place in Van Gogh’s heart. 

The first two were in his friend Paul Gauguin’s room because he was staying with Van Gogh for a bit. Gauguin loved the sunflowers too.

When Gauguin asked for one of the sunflower paintings as a gift, Van Gogh was initially unsure. 

Eventually, though, he made two more copies, and one of them is now on display at the Van Gogh Museum for everyone to see.

Don’t miss the Van Gogh Museum first floor when you plan your visit.

Note: “Experience yourself in the vibrant colors and emotional depth of Van Gogh’s works on the first floor and journey up to the second floor.

Here, you will gain a deeper understanding of Van Gogh artistic techniques and his personal correspondence, offer a deeper insight into the life and the mind of this extraordinary artist”

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