Marc Chagall, Le songe du Capitaine Bryaxis (Captain Bryaxis's Dream) from Daphnis & Chloë, 1961

Artist: Marc Chagall (1887 - 1985)
Title:Le songe du Capitaine Bryaxis (Captain Bryaxis's Dream) from Daphnis & Chloë, 1961
Medium:Original Color Chagall Lithograph
Image:25 1/4 in x 16 1/2 in (64.12 cm x 41.91 cm)
Sheet:29 1/2 in x 21 in (75 cm x 54 cm)
Framed:47 3/4 in x 39 1/2 in (121.29 cm x 100.33 cm)
Signature:This work is hand signed by Marc Chagall in pencil in the lower right margin
Condition:This piece is in fabulous condition, a stunning impression with strong, bold colors
ID #w-1971


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Historical Description

Upon initial observation, the dominant colors appear to be grays and blacks interpreting an ominous ocean seen. However, Chagall's technique of integrating radiant yellows, blues, whites, and greens that materialize from the grey give this work an optimistic, happy, and festive tone. The expressions on each of the characters display a lively aura that only serves to brighten and enhance the overall aesthetic and add to the grand love story between Daphnis & Chloe.

Having been inspired in part by his friendship with Greek publisher, Efstratio Elftheriades at Tériade, Chagall became intrigued with Greek mythology and antiquity. Thus a series of illustrations came to fruition for the tale of Daphnis & Chloe in which visits to Greece by the artist in 1952 and 1954 became the basis of inspiration for the resulting works.

Comprised of four books and originally written in the 2nd century by Greek writer, Longus, this tale follows two young protagonists over the course of two years whose relationship eventually blossoms into love as they face hardship, adventure, and separation in the typical style of Greek tragedy and mythology. The illustrations created for this novel depict specific scenes in the plot, however it is the manner in which Chagall takes these scenes and transforms them into works of his own that makes this series "a work of notable importance, which, unquestionably, can be placed at the top of the list of illustrated works of our time" (Mourlot 131) . It took him four years from start to finish to complete the lithography process, working with Charles Sorlier at the Ateliers Mourlot in creating prints with as many as 25 colors (and consequently, 25 lithography stones) . Completed in 1961 by Tériade, Chagall developed a multi-layered work creating a stunning effect of brilliant and emerging color with Captain Bryaxis's Dream.

Catalogue Raisonné & COA:
It is fully documented and referenced in (copies will be enclosed as added documentation with the invoices that I will accompany the final sale of the work) :

1) Gauss, Ulrike, ed. Marc Chagall: The Lithographs, La Collection Sorlier. Listed and illustrated on pg. 159 as cat. no. 328. Detailed on pgs. 137-139.

2) Cramer, Patrick. Marc Chagall, The Illustrated Books: Catalogue Raisonné. Detailed on pg. 154 and illustrated on pg. 158.

3) Mourlot, Fernand. The Lithographs of Chagall vol. II, 1957-1962. Listed and illustrated on pg. 148-149 as cat. 328. Detailed on pg. 131.

4) Meyer, Franz. Marc Chagall. Listed and illustrated in the Classified Catalogue as no. 912 and detailed on pg. 548.

About the Framing:
Custom framed in a beautiful and elegant gold moulding, Captain Bryaxis's Dream is mounted in white, linen-wrapped matting with a matching gold inner fillet. The delicate, organic features of the frame serve to accent the stroke of Chagall's unique artistry and also helps bring out the lighter tones and hues of the work. Set behind a Plexiglass cover, all materials are to museum quality and archival.