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Marc Chagall, Le Cirque (The Circus), from Cirque, 1967, M505

Artist: Marc Chagall (1887 - 1985)
Title:Le Cirque (The Circus), from Cirque, 1967, M505
Reference:Mourlot 505
Series:Circus Series
Medium:Color lithograph on Arches paper
Sheet:20 7/16 in x 14 3/4 in (51.9 cm x 37.5 cm)
Edition:Numbered from the edition of 50 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-7088

Historical Description

Marc Chagall’s Le Cirque (The Circus), from Cirque, 1967 is one of the eye-catching lithographs from Chagall’s Circus series. Publisher and art dealer Ambroise Vollard loved the circus and commissioned a production of circus graphics, for which Chagall executed a series of gouaches in the late 1920s. Chagall was a circus enthusiast himself, and his assistant Charles Sorlier noted Chagall’s childlike pleasure in watching the performers.  When speaking of circus performers and clowns, Chagall said, “Their colors and make-up draw me towards other psychic deformations, which I dream of painting” (Mourlot 216). When Vollard died in 1939, the artist stopped working on the project, although circus motifs frequently appeared in his work after that time. Chagall eventually started working on the series again with encouragement from Tériade, who published the thirty-eight lithographs of the series in 1967. Capturing the dynamic energy of the circus and its lively performers, this work is a masterpiece any Chagall enthusiast would admire.

 

Marc Chagall’s Le Cirque (The Circus), from Cirque, 1967 is an unusual lithograph in the Cirque series for its dynamic depiction of a circus performer. The facial features of the figure are in three-quarter view, adding a sense of dimensionality that differs from Chagall’s typically flat figures. In fact, the face is further emphasized by its bright pink hue, which contrasts the sapphire blue hat above it and the deep green color in the rest of the figure’s body. The leaning torso of the figure conveys a sense of continuous movement, as if the figure were merely passing through the image to perform beyond the borders of the image itself. The figure’s hands are held together in a gesture that implies potential energy, as if the figure is about to burst forth with arms outstretched in a surge of showmanship. By focusing on a single figure, Marc Chagall’s Le Cirque (The Circus), from Cirque, 1967 exemplifies a more personal glance at circus performances, staging direct engagement with the audience beyond the picture plane.

 

Created in 1967, Marc Chagall’s Le Cirque (The Circus), from Cirque, 1967 is a color lithograph on Arches paper. This work is hand-signed by Marc Chagall (Vitebsk, 1887 - Saint-Paul, 1985) in the lower right margin. Numbered from edition of 50 in the lower left margin.

 

Catalogue Raisonné & COA:

Marc Chagall’s Le Cirque (The Circus), from Cirque, 1967 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. 505.
  2. Mourlot, Fernand. The Lithographs of Chagall, vol. II 1957-1962. Monté Carlo, 1960. Listed and illustrated as catalogue raisonné no. 505.
  3. A Certificate of Authenticity will accompany this artwork.

 

About the Framing:

Framed to museum-grade, conservation standards, Marc Chagall’s Le Cirque (The Circus), from Cirque, 1967 is presented in a complementary moulding and finished with silk-wrapped mats and optical grade Plexiglas.

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