Marc Chagall, ‘The Crucifixion’, 1964, Baterbys Art Gallery
Marc Chagall, ‘The Crucifixion’, 1964, Baterbys Art Gallery

The subject of the Crucifixion may seem an unusual one for Chagall, who was a prominent Jewish artist. However, he often visited Russian Orthodox churches as a child and became fascinated with images of the Crucifixion. His 1938 painting White Crucifixion was the first in a series of works on the subject. For Chagall, Christ symbolized the ultimate Jewish martyr, and he used his Crucifixion images to call attention to the suffering and persecution of the Jews. All of Chagall's Crucifixion pieces represent a unique interpretation of a frequently depicted subject.

From the numbered edition of 30, numbered in pencil, lower left

Signature: Hand signed in pencil, lower right

About Marc Chagall

Honored for his distinct style and pioneering role among Jewish artists, Marc Chagall painted dream-like subjects rooted in personal history and Eastern European folklore. He worked in several mediums, including painting, printmaking, and book illustration, and his stained glass windows can be seen in New York, France, and Jerusalem. Chagall arrived in Paris in 1910 and began experimenting with Cubism, befriending painters Robert Delaunay and Fernand Léger. Chagall’s style has been described as a hybrid of Cubism, Fauvism, and Symbolism, and his supernatural subjects are thought to have significantly influenced the Surrealists. Though he actively engaged in the Parisian artistic community, art for Chagall was first and foremost a means of personal expression. He preferred to be considered separately from other artists, his imagery and allegory uniquely his own.

Russian-French, 1887-1985, Vitebsk, Belarus