In 1889 van Gogh was voluntarily admitted to the mental hospital Saint-Paul-de-Mausole. The motif is his interpretation of the view from his room, which he depicted in several versions with varying conditions of weather and light.
The serpentine brush-strokes and clear contours are characteristic of the late van Gogh. The rolling cloud formations herald a less sober mode of painting than Impressionism.
The landscape as motif is on its way to becoming a state of soul, not least under the influence of Paul Gauguin, with whom van Gogh painted in Arles in 1888.