Van Gogh's rendered his bedroom in colors meant to suggest rest or sleep of the mind. He described them in detail in a letter:
"The walls are of a pale violet. The floor — is of red tiles. The bedstead and the chairs are fresh butter yellow. The sheet and the pillows very bright lemon green. The bedspread scarlet red. The window green. The dressing table orange, the basin blue. The doors lilac."
Van Gogh prepared the room in the modest two-story building in Arles himself. He welcomed housemate Paul Gauguin, hoping to create a model of how other painters could live and work together.
"The colour has to do the job here, and through its being simplified by giving a grander style to things, to be suggestive here of rest or of sleep in general. In short, looking at the painting should rest the mind, or rather, the imagination." - Vincent van Gogh to Theo van Gogh. Arles, Tuesday 16 October 1888.