In 125 years, millions of people have looked at this painting. No one really saw it until recently.


I know Van Gogh was a genius. If the point of this were “Van Gogh was a mad genius,” I would not be sharing this with you.

Van Gogh suffered from severe migraines, which at that time was diagnosed as a level of insanity. For those who have suffered migraines before, you may be familiar with the auras that are associated with them. Van Gogh’s migraines greatly influenced his work, and Starry Night was painted in 1889 while at an asylum in France. Also, some people claim that someone else cut off his ear. Van Gogh cut his own ear off, which he then gave to a woman named Rachel. I learned the part about the ear in 5th grade and about his migraines in art history class…along with personal research. Don’t just read what one source says and take it to be correct.

But I found this and I thought, “Oh, what a vaguely interesting thing.” And then I got to the part about the Hubble Space Telescope, and, let me tell you: Mind. Blown.

Get this.

Van Gogh was a pretty cool artist (duh), but as it turns out…


*pretty much.

Here’s the story…

While Van Gogh was in an asylum in France (after he mutilated his ear during a psychotic episode)…

…he was able to capture one of science’s most elusive concepts:


Although it’s hard to understand with math (like, REALLY HARD), it turns out thatart makes it easy to depict how it LOOKS.

So what is turbulence?

Turbulence, or turbulent flow, is a concept of fluid dynamics where fluid movements are “self-similar” when there’s an energy cascade — so basically, big eddies make smaller eddies, and those make even smaller ones … and so on and so forth.

It looks like this:

See? It’s easier to look at pictures to understand it.

Thing is, scientists are pretty much *just* starting to figure this stuff out.

Then you’ve got Van Gogh, 100 years earlier, in his asylum, with a mutilated ear,who totally nailed it!

The folks who noticed Van Gogh’s ability to capture turbulence checked to see whether other impressionists did the same. Most impressionists achieved “luminance” with their art (which is the sort-of *pulsing* you see when you look at their paintings that really shows what light looks like).

But did other artists depict TURBULENCE the way Van Gogh did?


Not even “The Scream” could hold a candle to Van Gogh!

Even in his darkest time, Van Gogh was able to capture — eerily accurately — one of nature’s most complex and confusing concepts … 100 years before scientists began to scratch the surface.

Cool, huh?

Watch the video below to learn even more:

via and Credits: Upworthy

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