Search Results for 'chagall'

Marc Chagall, Lithograph, The Magic Flute, 1966

The name, Marc Chagall (1887-1985), conjures images of floating figures and animals, angels and fish, and bouquets of roses, expressing romanticism with harmonious colors exhibited throughout his artistic career spanning almost 80 years.

Born into an Hasidic Jewish family in what is now Belarus, he began studies in classical art in St. Petersburg in 1906 before moving to Paris in 1910 where he quickly embraced Fauvism. He returned to Belarus in 1914 to marry his finance, Bella, and bring her to Paris, however by the time he got home, WWI had broken out and the Russian border was sealed.

The next 9 years in Russia provided great advances for his work where he held numerous prestigious positions, but prejudices against Jews and struggles within the newly formed Soviet Union contributed to his return to Paris in 1923, where he formed a business relationship with Ambroise Vollard to produce prints of his works.

Escaping Nazi occupied France in 1941, he moved to New York where he remained throughout WWII. Unfortunately, Bella died from a viral infection in 1944 and since their exile from France, Chagall believed she had lost her will to live and considered her another victim of the Holocaust. In her memory, a bouquet of roses in included in almost all of his work.

He returned to France in 1948, where he settled in the artist community of Cote d’Azur, near both Matisse and Picasso. In the 1950s, Picasso said, “When Matisse dies, Chagall will be the only painter left who understands what colour really is”.

In 1963, despite protestations from many Parisians, the 77 year old Chagall was commissioned to paint the ceiling of the Paris Opera, a national monument. Five sections of canvas, covering more than 2400 sq feet, paid tribute to different composers, including Mozart and Wagner, and were glued to panels and raised to the 70 foot high ceiling. The Opera was presented to the public in September 1964.

In 1964, the Metropolitan Opera in New York commissioned him to design the stage sets and costumes for its first production of The Magic Flute, Mozart’s last opera that premiered less than 10 weeks before the 35 year old Mozart died in 1791. In three years, Chagall created 13 large curtains, 26 smaller curtains, and 121 costumes and masks for The Magic Flute.

This vividly colored by lithograph, titled The Magic Flute (Die Zauberflote), was published in 1967 by Mourlot for the Metropolitan Opera Company in an edition of approximately 3000 unsigned prints. This image, from the original edition printed in 1967 is in near mint condition.

40 x 26 inches

101.6 x 66 cm


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