“In our life there is a single color, as on an artist palette which provides the meaning of life and art. It is the color of love.” ~Marc Chagall

Marc Chagall (pronunciation) was a Russian-French artist and one of the most important figures in 20th-century art. He was a versatile artist, working in a variety of mediums including painting, printmaking, illustration, stained glass windows, and stage design. He is best known for his whimsical and dreamlike images, which often featured elements from Russian folklore and his Jewish heritage.

America Windows

Marc Chagall Early Life

Chagall was born on July 7, 1887, in Vitebsk, Russia (pronunciation). He was the oldest of nine children born to poor Jewish parents. From an early age, he showed an interest in art, and his first art lessons were given to him by his older sister, who had studied art in St. Petersburg. He later took classes at the Vitebsk Gymnasium and at the age of sixteen, he enrolled at the Saint Petersburg Academy of Fine Arts.

I and The Village

During his time at the Academy, Chagall was greatly influenced by the work of French artist Paul Gauguin. In 1910, Chagall returned to Vitebsk and married his childhood sweetheart, Bella Rosenfeld. The couple had two daughters, Ida and Maya.

Over the Town

A Master Artist’s Career

Chagall’s work began to attract the attention of art collectors, and in 1914 he had his first solo exhibition in Russia. When World War I broke out, Chagall was drafted into the Russian army, where he served a short time before being discharged due to an illness.

Paris Through the Window

Death of Chagall’s Wife

In 1923, Chagall and his family moved to Paris. There he was inspired by the city’s vibrant art scene, and he began to experiment with new styles and techniques. However, during the 1930s, his work began to reflect the growing political turmoil in Europe. He was still living in France when World War II broke out, after which he fled to America. Of course, the war deeply affected him, and later the death of his wife, which was reflected in his art.

The Drover, The Cattle Dealer

Marc Chagall’s Death

Once the war was over, the man came home to France, where he spent the rest of his life. Chagall died on March 28, 1985, in Saint-Paul-de-Vence, France. He was buried in the cemetery of the Russian Orthodox church in Nice.

White Crucifixion

Masterpiece Society Content

For more project ideas, check out these Marc Chagall-inspired art projects here:

Making Art with Kids: Chagall-Inspired Drawings by Art Class Curator

Daydreaming with Marc Chagall by KinderArt

Oil Pastel Houses Inspired by Marc Chagall by Teach Kids Art

Marc Chagall Stained Glass Murals by Art In Action

Marc Chagall Stained Glass Windows by Kim Weissenborn