Archive for January, 2011

A landscape by Frans Oerder

Vincent van Gogh had a younger brother, Cor.

Cornelius van Gogh moved to the Transvaal Republic in 1890 to work on the railway from Pretoria to Mozambique. When The Boer war broke out he joined as an ambulance driver. Cor was captured by the British, he fell ill and died in a field hospital in Brandfort in 1900. His grave is unmarked.

Serving in the Boer forces with him was one of Holland’s best artists. Frans Oerder came to the Transvaal in 1890, and worked on the same railway line as Cor van Gogh. In 1899 he joined the Boer forces as official war artist, and today many of his drawings and paintings are in South African museums.

After the war Oerder went back to Holland where he became one of the world’s most famous still life artists. He returned to South Africa until his death in 1944.

I have long had a fantasy of locating Cor van Gogh’s house in South Africa, and doing a careful search of it, attics and cellars. Imagine finding a painting by his brother Vincent! Or even a drawing, or a letter… But this is something that can only be done by many people, particularly the ones living in some of these old railway houses. If anybody should find such a treasure, please let me know!

Vincent died in 1890, the same year that Cor van Gogh and Frans Oerder moved to South Africa. Vincent was a great letter-writer, and his older brother Theo kept most of the ones he received. It seems to me more than just likely that he also wrote to Cornelis.

So get your Indiana Jones hats and start dusting off those old shoeboxes full of letters.


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2010 in review

The stats helper monkeys at WordPress.com mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meterâ„¢ reads This blog is doing awesome!.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

The Leaning Tower of Pisa has 296 steps to reach the top. This blog was viewed about 1,200 times in 2010. If those were steps, it would have climbed the Leaning Tower of Pisa 4 times


In 2010, there were 4 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 23 posts. There were 7 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 4mb.

The busiest day of the year was March 2nd with 73 views. The most popular post that day was The sad story of Lady Jane Grey.

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were artistvision.org, rynoswartdesign.createsend.com, mail.yahoo.com, en.wordpress.com, and student-loan-consilidation.com.

Some visitors came searching, mostly for ryno swart, ryno swart artist, paul delaroche, heuningbekkie, and ryno swart art.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.


The sad story of Lady Jane Grey March 2010


About Ryno Swart December 2008


A damned decent wage. January 2010


Looking. February 2010

Heuningbekkie January 2009
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