1848 Born in Paris. After the revolution of this year his father decides to move with his family to Peru. His father dies before arrival in Lima.
1854 Gauguin’s family return to France to enable his mother to claim a legacy.
1865 At the age of 17 Gauguin enlists in the Merchant Navy.
1867 Gauguin’s mother dies leaving her children under the guardianship of the financier, photographer and art collector, Gustave Arosa.
1871 Gauguin learns of his mother’s death.
1872 Returns to France where Arosa has arranged a position for Gauguin in the Paris Stock Exchange. Becomes an enthusiastic amateur painter.
1873 Marries a young Danish woman, Mette-Sophie Gad.
1874 Visits the First Impressionist Exhibition. Later meets Camille Pissarro who becomes his mentor.
1876 Exhibits a landscape at the Salon.
1882 The French stock market crashes and Gauguin loses his job.
1883 Deciding to make a living through his art, Gauguin moves with his wife and five children from Paris to Rouen.
1884 Mette and the children leave for Copenhagen where they live with her parents. Gauguin eventually follows.
1885 Gauguin works as a salesman in Copenhagen but in June he returns to Paris.
1886 Paints in the Breton village of Pont-Aven for five months.
1887 Leaves Paris for Panama and Martinique. Becomes ill and returns to Paris.
1888 Leaves Paris in February for Pont-Aven where he renews a friendship with Émile Bernard and meets Paul Sérusier. In October Gauguin joins Vincent van Gogh in Arles, sharing a tiny apartment. This disastrous episode ends two months later when van Gogh severs part of his left ear and Gauguin flees back to Paris.
1889 Returns to Pont-Aven. Exhibits in Paris at the Café Volpini with Bernard and others. Returns to Brittany, basing himself at Le Pouldu.
1891 After a successful auction of paintings to raise money, Gauguin travels to Tahiti but does not find the paradise he is looking for.
1893 Returns to Paris where an exhibition of his Tahitian work, mounted by Durand-Ruel, elicits a muted response.
1895 Deeply depressed by his lack of success, Gauguin leaves France to return to French Polynesia.
1897 Hearing of the death of his daughter Aline, Gauguin attempts suicide.
1899 Lack of money forces him to take various jobs, one as a journalist writing for a local satirical paper, Les Guêpes (The Wasps).
1901 Leaves Tahiti for Hiva Oa in the Marquesas, seeking a world unspoilt by European influence. He paints with renewed enthusiasm after two barren years.
1903 Dies at Atuona, Marquesas Islands.
1886 Four Breton Women Dancing, Munich, Neue Pinakothek
1887 Matinique (At the Pond’s Edge), Amsterdam, van Gogh Museum
1888 Old Women of Arles, Chicago, Art Institute
1888 Vision After the Sermon: Jacob Wrestling with the Angel, Edinburgh, National Gallery of Scotland
1888 Self-Portrait, Les Misérables, Amsterdam, van Gogh Museum
1889 La Belle Angèle, Paris, Musée d’Orsay
1889 Yellow Christ, Buffalo, Albright-Knox Art Gallery
1889 The Haystacks, London, Courtauld Institute Galleries
1888 Van Gogh Painting Sunflowers , Amsterdam, van Gogh Museum
1891 Women of Tahiti, Paris, Musée d’Orsay
1892 The Seed of the Areoi, New York, MOMA
1892 la Orana Maria (Hail Mary), New York, Metropolitan Museum of Art
1892 Arearea, Paris, Musée d’Orsay
1893 Ancestors of Tehamana, Chicago, Art Institute
1893 Ea Haere Ia Oe (Woman Holding a Fruit: Where Are We Going), St Petersburg, State Hermitage Museum
1894 Breton Landscape, The Mill, Paris, Musée d’Orsay
1894 The Miraculous Source, St Petersburg, State Hermitage Museum
1894 Breton Women (Two Peasants on a Road), Paris, Musée d’Orsay
1894 Self Portrait with a Hat, Paris, Musée d’Orsay
1896 Scene from Tahitian Life , St Petersburg, State Hermitage Museum
1896 A Vase of Flowers, London, National Gallery
1897 Vaïrumati, Paris, Musée d’Orsay
1897 Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We Going?, Boston, Museum of Fine Arts
1897 Nevermore, London, Courtauld Institute Galleries
1897 Te Rerioa, London, Courtauld Institute Galleries
1897 The Bathers, Washington, National Gallery of Art
1898 The White Horse, Paris, Musée d’Orsay
1899 Flowers and Cats , Copenhagen, Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek
1901 And the Gold of Their Bodies , Paris, Musée d’Orsay
1902 Savage Tales , Essen, Museum Folkwang
1902 Girl with a Fan, Essen, Folkwang Museum
1902 The Calling, Cleveland, Museum of Art
1903 Women and a White Horse, Boston, Museum of Fine Arts