Wildenstein Exhibits the Ethereal Paintings of Marc Chagall
NEW YORK CITY – Wildenstein & Company, 19 East 64th Street, is currently presenting an exhibition of paintings and works on paper by Marc Chagall (1887-1985), one of the masters of Twentieth Century art.
The earliest work in the exhibition is a view of Chagall’s birthplace of Vitebsk, located in preset-day Belorussia, which dates from 1917. The subject of Vitebsk – its important Jewish community with its religious rites and folklore-loomed large in Chagall’s imagery for the remainder of his life.
One of the most beloved figures from his youth was the village fiddler, immortalized in several of his early works as well as in his masterful “Red Violinist with the World Turned Upside Down” of 1929, which is exhibited here for the first time since 1950. In a similar topsy-turvy mode is the small and colorful “Young Girl and a Horse” of 1944, formerly in the collection of Pierre Matisse and Mr and Mrs Kirk Douglas.
Also featured are two allegorical paintings of Paris, each dated 1953, part of a series of works inspired by the artist’s joyous return to that city in 1948 after eight years of exile in New York. The artist’s love of music is commemorated in the “Orpheus” of 1969, a work characterized by a kaleidoscope of colors that was featured in the Chagall retrospective at Florence’s Palazzo Pitti in 1978. This large and colorful composition relates to a mosaic commissioned by two friends of the artist for their Washington, DC, home in 1969. One of the last painting in the exhibition is “La Musicienne,” a richly-textured composition that dates from 1978, when the painter was 92.
One of the highlights of the works on paper is “The Fiancee Wearing Black Gloves” from 1929, which celebrates Chagall’s love for his wife Bella Rosenfeld, whom he had met 20 years earlier. There are two lush watercolor and gouache compositions inspired by the French Riviera, where the artist permanently settled in 1950. The artist’s hallmark imagery of flowers, nudes and fruit grace these works, both dating from 1969. Finally, the show features two of the artist’s rare collages, including “Harlequin Holding a Bird” of 1978.
A catalogue has been published for the exhibition.
Gallery hours are 10 am to 5 pm. For information call 212/879-0500.