The edition we present here is a new step on the road described above (Painted with words, published in the autumn of 2007, was a foretaste). It is easy enough with hindsight to point to shortcomings in previous editions, but the editing standards of today were simply not an issue in the past, particularly in the Netherlands, where ‘scholarly editions’ are a relatively recent phenomenon. Furthermore, the Van Gogh Museum and the Huygens Institute made resources and manpower available on an unprecedented scale for the Van Gogh Letters Project, of which our edition is the result.
This edition has taken every possible advantage of the research into Van Gogh’s works and letters that has been done in more than a century. The self-evident endeavour to draw upon and present as much relevant material as possible is coupled with the expectation that the use of new digital media will open up the complete corpus to a much greater extent than was possible in the past.