In 1891, Paul Gauguin (1848--1903) arrives on the French Polynesian island of Tahiti. In this lush paradise, he is liberated from the concerns of the city-dwelling European. He is free: to love, to sing, and to create. In Copenhagen, Gauguin's wife enjoys no such freedom. She would rather forget her odious husband and his degenerate artwork. Instead, in a city resistant to the avant-garde, she is tasked with selling a collection of his extravagantly priced Tahitian paintings. When they finally go on sale--in Paris, shortly after Gauguin's return--sales are catastrophic. For Monet, Renoir, and the rest of the old guard, nothing indicates that these bizarre, visionary works are of any lasting significance. A biography of an artist whose qualities as a man won him few admirers in his own lifetime, but whose talents as a painter would have an enormous influence on the art of Picasso, Matisse, and many more.