November 4, 2011
Yesterday, I have gotten the chance to see one of the paintings by Marc Chagall, which had captured my imagination a long time ago.
If you were, hypothetically, unable to see this work, here's how it coudld be described verbally, in a non-academic style:
The main idea of this painting is the unity between three figures – a man, a woman, and an angel, who occupy the space at the center of the canvas. The man is perched on the woman’s shoulders. He is holding a glass of red wine in one hand, while covering one of the woman’s eyes with the other. The expression on his face is cheerful, nearly overjoyed.
The woman looks like a bride in a long white décolleté dress. She is holding a fan, and there is a white glove on one of her hands. Her face, undoubtedly, expresses happiness. She doesn’t seem to have anything against supporting this man on her shoulders.
The composition is completed by the figure of an angel, who doesn’t seem to express anything unusual. You could interpret this angel as a compositional trick, to add to the sense of balance. I think he plays a symbolic role. Without him, the whole scene would lose its meaning.
Or, rather, it would acquire a different mood – perhaps a less emotional, more comedic one.
In real life, Marc Chagall married Bella Rosenfeld, despite all the circumstances that did not favour their relationship – historical and financial ones. He painted this picture. When you see it in front of you, it really doesn’t want to release you. Yes, apparently, even in the middle of a horrifying revolution, it is possible to create enchanting paintings that evoke a sense of happiness. The visual poetry in the works by Marc Chagall is full of hidden meanings – this is why his art is unique to me.
At the moment, there is an exhibition taking place at the AGO – Marc Chagall and the Russian Avant-Garde.