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Marc Chagall, Le Cirque (The Circus), from Cirque, 1967, M511

Artist: Marc Chagall (1887 - 1985)
Title:Le Cirque (The Circus), from Cirque, 1967, M511
Reference:Mourlot 511
Series:Circus Series
Medium:Color lithograph on Arches paper
Sheet:20 1/4 in x 14 3/4 in (51.7 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-7094

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 features a female circus performer posing atop a stylized horse and a clown glancing upward at her. The cool color palette of this image evokes a sense of interior space as well as elegant movement. The female figure leans across the left side of the composition with legs crossed and head curved inward, while a clown leans towards her from the lower right corner of the composition to meet her gaze. This mutual gaze fills the negative space between the two figures with an implied psychological connection. The horse on which the female figure stands has two large eyes that sit on top of each other on one side of the horse’s head, common imagery throughout Chagall’s works that add a sense of dreamlike unreality. Gestural lines delineate the figures and add a sense of vitality to their forms, imbuing the overall composition with movement and potential energy. Showcasing Chagall’s characteristic topoi and weightless compositional style, Marc Chagall’s Le Cirque (The Circus), from Cirque, 1967 offers a uniquely playful yet elegant representation of an equestrian circus act.

 

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. 511.
  2. Mourlot, Fernand. The Lithographs of Chagall, vol. II 1957-1962. Monté Carlo, 1960. Listed and illustrated as catalogue raisonné no. 511.
  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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