Vincent Van Gogh described innkeeper Joseph-Michel Ginoux's grotty all-night establishment in Arles, France, as "a place where one can ruin oneself, go mad, or commit a crime." A fascination with the room inspired the artist to commit it to canvas as The Night Café, one of only a handful of paintings he signed and titled.
Writer Cliff Edwards (pictured), a Virginia Commonwealth University professor of religious studies, opens a door of perception into Van Gogh's process in his latest book, The Mystery of the Night Café. Art historian Warren Roberts says, "His conclusions are nothing short of brilliant." The book completes a trilogy by Edwards that includes Van Gogh and God and The Shoes of Van Gogh.
Edwards (named one of Richmond magazine's "20 People to Watch in 2009") is scheduled to appear at several upcoming signing events: April 3, 6 to 8 p.m., at Book People, 536 Granite Ave.; April 10, 6 to 8 p.m., at Chop Suey Tuey, 2913 W. Cary St.; April 18, 1 to 3 p.m., at Barnes & Noble Libbie Place; April 21, 6:30 to 8 p.m., at Fountain Bookstore, 1312 E. Cary St.; and April 25, 1 to 3 p.m., at Barnes & Noble Short Pump.