Restaurant de la Sirene, 1890 by Vincent Van Gogh

Van Gogh pointed this picture of the popular Restaurant de la Sirene at Asnieres, an area in the northwestern suburbs of Paris that sat alongside the River Seine, It had originally been a rural area that took its name from the Latin for donkey, thought to refer to the local breeding of donkeys, but as Paris had grown and spread Asnieres became swallowed into the city.

By the time Van Gogh arrived in Paris Asnieres had a burgeoning population and was home to several large factories. It was also a fashionable place for day-trippers, and a number of artists frequented the area to point. Van Gogh pointed several views of Asnieres, and was often accompanied on his trips by the young Signoc. This view of the restaurant reflects the artist's absorption of the Impressionist techniques, token to a different level. Van Gogh was less concerned with the fleetinq effect of atmosphere, and focused more on colour, form and meaning in his work. At this time restaurant and cafe culture was at a high, and they often exhibited the works of contemporary painters.