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Marc Chagall, Daphne et Chloé (Daphne and Chloe), Frontispiece, from Daphnis et Chloé, 1961

Artist: Marc Chagall (1887 - 1985)
Title:Daphne et Chloé (Daphne and Chloe), Frontispiece, from Daphnis et Chloé, 1961
Reference:Mourlot 308
Series:Daphnis and Chloe Series
Medium:Color lithograph on Arches paper
Image:16 5/8 x 12 5/8 in. (42.2 x 32.1 cm)
Sheet:22 3/8 in x 15 1/4 in (56.3 cm x 38.2 cm)
Edition:Numbered from the edition of 60 in the lower left margin.
Signature:This work is hand-signed by Marc Chagall (Vitebsk, 1887 - Saint-Paul, 1985) in the lower right margin.
Condition:This work is in excellent condition.
ID #w-6996

Historical Description

Marc Chagall’s Daphne et Chloé (Daphne and Chloe), Frontispiece, 1961 is one of the stunning lithographs within the illustrated Daphne and Chloe series that Fernand Mourlot considered to be one of "the most important graphic works that Marc Chagall has created thus far." Chagall dedicated three years to this project and undertook a series of lithographs that perhaps defined his career, making these pieces "a work of notable importance which, unquestionably, can be placed at the top of the list of illustrated works of our time" (Mourlot 131). Daphnis and Chloe, the two romantic heroes of Greek writer, Longus, are two childhood friends who undergo the trials and tribulations of growing up and, consequently, falling in love. Evoking the rich Mediterranean landscapes from which Chagall personally drew inspiration, this work is a masterpiece any Chagall enthusiast would admire.

The rich colors and imaginative composition of Marc Chagall’s Daphne et Chloé (Daphne and Chloe), Frontispiece, 1961 capture the timeless subject of youthful lovers in Chagall’s iconic artistic style. The two figures in the foreground represent the titular protagonists from Longus’ book Daphnis and Chloe. Not much is known about the author or historical context in which this story was written, so Chagall’s representations of the figures and scenes in the book are drawn from the artist’s own imagination. To gather inspiration before creating his Daphnis et Chloe series, Chagall travelled to Greece: the first time to gather inspiration for his initial gouaches, and the second time to determine if his first renderings captured what he felt was the emotional experience of Greece. The color in Marc Chagall’s Daphne et Chloé (Daphne and Chloe), Frontispiece, 1961 functions as a means of visualizing the energy of the Daphne and Chloe as they discover their desire for each other. The figure on the left foreground is rendered in a saturated fuchsia that juxtaposes the deep cerulean hue of the right figure, creating a visual dialogue that captures the budding romance and emotional awakening of Daphnis and Chloe. Framing the heads of the two figures are representations of trees executed in a wash of lime green with smatterings of reds, yellows and blues. As a frontispiece, Marc Chagall’s Daphne et Chloé (Daphne and Chloe), Frontispiece, 1961 would be designed to serve as the cover page of a printed version of the text.

Created in 1961, this color lithograph on Arches paper is hand-signed by Marc Chagall (Vitebsk, 1887 - Saint-Paul, 1985) in pencil in the lower right margin and numbered from the edition of 60 in the lower left margin.

Catalogue Raisonné & COA:
Marc Chagall’s Daphne et Chloé (Daphne and Chloe), Frontispiece, 1961 is fully documented and referenced in the below catalogue raisonnés and texts (copies will be enclosed as added documentation with the invoices that will accompany the sale of the work).

1. Gauss, Ulrike. Marc Chagall: The Lithographs. The Sorlier collection. Edited by Ulrike Gauss et. al. New York: Distributed Art Publishers., Inc., 1999. Listed and illustrated as catalogue raisonné no. 308.
2. Mourlot, Fernand. The Lithographs of Chagall, vol. II 1957-1962. Monté Carlo, 1960. Listed and illustrated as catalogue raisonné no. 308.
3. A Certificate of Authenticity will accompany this artwork.

About the Framing:
Framed to museum-grade, conservation standards, Marc Chagall’s Daphne et Chloé (Daphne and Chloe), Frontispiece, 1961 is presented in a complementary moulding and finished with silk-wrapped mats and optical grade Plexiglas.

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