'Faa Iheihe' was painted in Tahiti, where Gauguin spent his later years. Gauguin was inspired by Tahiti, and wrote in 1898, 'Each day - my latest important paintings attest to this - I realise that I have not yet said all there is to say here in Tahiti ... whereas in France, with all the disgust I feel there, my brain would probably be sterile; the cold freezes me both physically and mentally, and everything becomes ugly to my eyes.'
Faa Iheihe 1898
700 x 1855 x 95 mm
Date of work
Oil paint on canvas 54 x 169.5 cm
Born in Paris in June 1848, Gauguin was a painter, sculptor, printmaker and ceramicist. Throughout his life he worked in an Impressionist style before developing a personal style of Symbolism, which combined an idealised and simplistic vision of Polynesian culture with a ‘pessimistic’ European style. His work, particularly his use of non-naturalistic colour was highly influential in the avant-garde artist world in the early 20th century. Gauguin died in May 1903 in Atuona, Marquesas Islands, French Polynesia.