Segments in this Video

Paul Gauguin (04:22)


In a 1903 letter, Gaugin describes himself as a savage. His great granddaughter Mette Gauguin discusses a sketch of her grandfather, woodcuts, and Gauguin's nickname. Christopher Riopelle and Mette discuss Gaugin's background and heritage.

Gauguin's Family and Career (03:22)

Gauguin marries Mette Gade and they have five children. Art becomes an obsession and he befriends Camille Pissarro. Gauguin loses his job and the family moves to Denmark.

Evolving Art (05:28)

Gauguin believes going to Brittany is essential to his art. He arrives in Pont-Aven in 1886 and begins working with Émile Bernard. Gauguin searches for simplification.

"Vision After the Sermon" (03:38)

Gauguin creates his breakthrough painting in 1888; experts discuss artistic elements. A country chapel inspires "The Yellow Christ." Gauguin becomes a leader.

Art in Arles, France (06:54)

Gauguin visits Vincent van Gogh and stays at the Yellow House. Experts discuss the art they produce during this time and their straining relationship; van Gogh cuts off his ear.

South Pacific (06:15)

The 1889 World's Fair sparks Gauguin's interest in Tahiti and he goes to Papeete. He dislikes the European atmosphere and travels to the other side of the island and begins painting; Tai Shan Schierenberg mimics his style.

Tahitian Paintings (04:26)

Gauguin tries to capture traditional ways of life; his work veers toward mythology. Andreas Dettloff discusses Gauguin's influence. Gauguin becomes emotionally involved with the women he paints; he "marries" Tehura.

"The Spirit of the Dead Watching" (06:00)

Gauguin learns that Tahitians fear the dark. Some of his paintings of Polynesian women are controversial. Tyla Vaeau Ta'ofu'ou considers colonial representations of women. Experts discuss culture, provocative art, and perceptions.

Painter and Author (04:11)

Gauguin returns to France after two years in Tahiti. He writes "Noa Noa" in hopes of increasing sales. Caroline Boyle-Turner discusses "Oviri" and its symbolism.

Gauguin's Return to Tahiti (04:50)

Gauguin learns that Tehura married and Pau'ura becomes his "wife." Experts compare "The King's Wife" to Edouard Manet's "Olympia." Marcel Tai Gauguin has a reproduction gallery of his grandfather's work.

Marquesas Islands (03:29)

Gauguin leaves Tahiti and builds a house on Atuona. He is anti-colonial, makes fun of the bishop, and supports the Marquesans.

Gauguin's Final Months (05:08)

Gauguin does not compromise, even in his final self-portrait. He becomes ill and addicted to morphine; Gauguin dies in 1903. Experts reflect on his legacy.

Credits: Gauguin: A Dangerous Life (00:52)

Credits: Gauguin: A Dangerous Life

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Gauguin: A Dangerous Life

DVD (Chaptered) Price: $169.95
DVD + 3-Year Streaming Price: $254.93
3-Year Streaming Price: $169.95



Paul Gauguin is one of the world’s most popular – and controversial – artists. Instantly recognizable, his paintings are in galleries across the globe and have been adored for their colorful beauty, the most famous celebrating serenely exotic women and landscapes of the Pacific Islands at a time when few could travel there. But he also led a life that was shocking, then and now. In recent years, Gauguin’s life and his works have come under intense and often angry reassessment. With the rise of feminist, colonial, and indigenous studies, this is the first film about the artist to view him afresh and ask the essential and fundamental questions about Gauguin’s role in perpetuating the prejudices and myths which have until now ruled much of our lives.

Length: 60 minutes

Item#: BVL210646

Copyright date: ©2019

Closed Captioned

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Not available to Home Video, Dealer and Publisher customers.

Only available in USA and Canada.