1885 – 1886
Before Vincent moved to France for good, he spent three months in Antwerp, taking lessons at the Academy there. He drew from plaster and live models; in the evenings, he frequented drawing clubs. He took regular strolls through the city and along the docks. He did some city scenes, portraits of working-class people and one remarkable painting of the head of a skeleton with a lit cigarette. His unhealthy lifestyle of hard work, a poor diet and too much smoking inevitably took its toll. He was at risk of losing teeth and sought dental treatment.