Facts About Marc Chagall

Here are some facts about Marc Chagall, the famous Russian artist.

  • Marc Chagall was an incredibly successful artist and he produced work using a wide range of artistic mediums and techniques, including: painting, illustration, stained glass, prints, ceramics and tapestry.
  • Chagall was born on 6th July 1887 in Liozna, near Vitebsk in (what is now) Belarus. His family were Jewish and his family name was originally Shagal.

  • In 1906 Chagall moved to St Petersburg. Jews were not allowed to enter the city without an internal passport. Chagall managed to get a temporary passport, and he became a student at the Zvantseva School of Drawing and Painting.
  • Chagall moved to Paris in 1910. He painted remembered scenes of his hometown Vitebsk, full of symbolism and metaphor.
  • Chagall married Bella Rosenfeld in 1914, and, after the 1917 October Revolution, he was offered the jo of commissar of the arts for Vitebsk. In this role, he established the Vitebsk Arts College.
  • From 1931, Chagall worked on illustrations for the Old Testament. These were finally published in 1956.
  • Marc Chagall and his family were in extreme danger following Hitler’s invasion of France during World War 2. Not only were they Jewish, but Chargall’s well-known artwork was inspired by his Jewish upbringing in Vitebsk. He to the US with his family on 23rd June 1941.
  • In New Yoek Chagall was well-known ans he became friends with Piet Mondrian and Andre Breton. Henri Matisse organised and managed exhibitions of Chagall’s work in New York and Chicago in 1941.
  • After the World War 2, and following the death of his wife, Bella, Chagall returned to Paris.
  • In 1963, Chagall painted the ceiling of the Paris Opera, producing a canvas with an area of over 200 square metres.
  • Chagall’s use of colour was incredibly important to his work. Pablo Picasso is reported as saying, “When Matisse dies, Chagall will be the only painter left who understands what colour really is.”
  • Marc Chagall died on 28th March 1985, aged 97.

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