Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Marc Chagall: Russian-born French painter. Born to a humble Jewish family in the ghetto of a large town in White Russia.
Very early in life he was encouraged by his mother to follow his vocation and she managed to get him into a St Petersburg art school.
After he went to Vitebsk, became engaged to Bella Rosenfeld (whom he married twelve years later), then, in 1910, set off for Paris, 'the Mecca of art'.
He was a tenant at La Ruche, where he had Modigliani and Soutine for neighbours.
His Slav Expressionism was tinged with the influence of Daumier,the Nabis and the Fauves. He was also influenced by Cubism. Essentially a colourist, Chagall was interested in the Simultaneist vision of Robert Delaunay and the Luminists of the Section d'Or.
For a while he returned to Viebsk (where he worked at the theater) only to return to Paris in 1923.
His emblematic irrationality shook off all outside influences: colour governed his compositions, calling up chimerical processions of memory where reality and the imaginary are woven into a single legend, born in Vitebsk and dreamed in Paris.