Marc Chagall: artist of the floating world

Woodend is showing lithograph prints by one of the twentieth century’s great modernist artists, Marc Chagall, this month. The exhibition includes lithographs from the Bible Suite and The Odyssey of Homer (1974) and etchings from Gogol’s Dead Souls (1948) and La Fontaine’s Fables (1928-31).

Born in Vitebsk, in what is now Belarus, Chagall became a cosmopolitan European artist who formed part of the fantastic movements in art based on Paris in the early part of the century. He also worked in St Petersburg, Moscow and later in the United States.

His Bible illustrations came from a commission to develop work from the Old Testament. Visiting Palestine, he rediscovered his Jewish roots and history. He worked on the monumental Bible task for 25 years, completing a total of 106 plates. During that time he and his wife Bella made a dramatic escape from Nazi-occupied France to the United States, rescued by concerned diplomats and others, returning in 1948.

Chagall worked in many media but is perhaps best known for his lithographs, painting including the ceiling of the Paris opera house, and stained glass. He once said: “Whenever I bent over the lithography stone…it was as though I was touching a talisman. It seemed as though I could pour all my sadness and joys into it.”

Marc Chagall, Monday 2 April 2012 – Saturday 28 April 2012

Opening hours:

9am - 5pm weekdays

10am - 4pm Saturdays, Good Friday, Easter Sunday, and Bank Holiday Monday

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