Marc Chagall, Le Cirque (The Circus), from Cirque, 1967, M523
|Artist:||Marc Chagall (1887 - 1985)|
|Title:||Le Cirque (The Circus), from Cirque, 1967, M523|
|Medium:||Color lithograph on Arches paper|
|Sheet:||20 3/8 in x 14 13/16 in (51.8 cm x 37.7 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.|
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 showcases the lithe figure of a female circus performer, a popular image that Chagall revisits multiple times in the Cirque series. The sepia-tinted background neutralizes the saturated sapphire blue torso and head of the female figure, which creates a dimming visual effect that makes the composition feel like an interior scene. The female figure is surrounded by a thick outline of taupe with hints of pale blue, which not only visually highlights the figure but evokes the iconography of the mandorla or aureole of light around figures of Christ and the Virgin Mary. A dark green arm connected to a yellow face reaches upward along the female figure’s leg, fusing with its sinewy form and becoming one with the figure. The patterned legs of the female figure coupled with her saturated blue upper body transform her into a sculptural form. Such features in Marc Chagall’s Le Cirque (The Circus), from Cirque, 1967 demonstrate the artist’s unique visual language and attest to his romanticized notion of the circus.
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).
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.