From 27 March to 6 April 2023, art enthusiasts and collectors will have a chance to discover 50 new-to-the-market works by Marc Chagall in Christie’s online sale, Chagall et la Musique.
These works, most of which are in pristine condition, were all formerly in the artist’s estate and have never been offered for sale before.
Chagall et la Musique is part of a Christie’s auction series entitled Marc Chagall, Colour of Life: Works formerly from the artist’s estate, which has already totalled over €21 million to date.
The Paris auction features around forty works on paper and a dozen lithographs, offering collectors attractive estimates ranging from €1,000 to €200,000.
This is a wonderful opportunity to acquire a piece by Marc Chagall, one of the most sought-after impressionist and modern artists on the market.
The Pictorial Musicality of Marc Chagall
Most of the works offered in Paris were created in the latter half of the artist’s life when he returned to France after his Second World War exile in the United States.
For some of them, Chagall was nearly 100 years old, but all feature the artist’s “pictorial musicality.” The elements in his compositions dance, sing, and come together across the pictorial space, resonating differently according to colour, light, the contrasts of superimposed or juxtaposed shapes, and the media’s nuances.
Chagall’s Personal Connections to Music
Chagall’s uncle was a violinist, and his brother played the mandolin. As a result, Chagall had very personal connections with music from a young age. Musicians and string instruments underpin the language of his entire body of work.
With their instruments tucked under their arms, musicians also become harbingers of doom during the most fraught periods in history, as depicted in Rencontre Multicolore Avec Le Peintre Pour Le Concert (1974, estimate: €200,000 – €400,000) – the auction highlight.
Chagall’s Commissions in the World of Music
Chagall was endlessly inspired by the boundless space created by music, shaping his pictorial world through all media. The artist also carried out numerous substantial commissions worldwide, including costume creation and set design for ballets, stage curtains, and opera costumes.
In 1964, Chagall painted the Opéra Garnier’s ceiling, the zenith of his artistic career. The famous Parisian façade would become a recurring figure in his work, as in L’Ange Devant l’Opéra (1981, estimate: €180,000 – €200,000).
Commedia dell’arte, his monumental work for the Foyer in Frankfurt’s theatre, was completed after numerous gouache paintings and preparatory studies.
Among these, seven previously unknown preparatory studies will be offered for sale with estimates ranging from €4,000 to €30,000. These works, representative of the highly symbolic, reflective phase of post-War Germany, reveal the artist’s extensive creative process.
The sale also features two preparatory studies for works now in museums, notably a colourful, fleshed-out study for Les gens du voyage (estimate: €25,000 – €35,000). The final 1968 canvas painting has been on loan to the Céret Museum by the Centre Pompidou since its 1988 donation by the artist’s estate.
Part II of Marc Chagall, Colour of Life: Prints and Artist’s Books Formerly from the Artist’s Estate
This October, Christie’s New York will be presenting Part II of Marc Chagall, Colour of Life: Prints and Artist’s Books Formerly from the Artist’s Estate. Celebrating Chagall’s lifelong love of printmaking, the sale will feature works from the 1920s to the 1970s, including several rare, extensively hand-coloured proofs.
The online sale, Chagall et la Musique, will take place from 27 March to 6 April 2023. A viewing will be available from 30 March to 6 April 2023, open every day from 10 am to 6 pm, except Sunday 2 April from 2 pm to 6 pm. The event will be held at Christie’s Paris, located at 9, Avenue Matignon – 75008 Paris.
In conclusion, Christie’s upcoming online sale, Chagall et la Musique, offers a unique opportunity for art collectors and enthusiasts to discover 50 new works by the legendary artist, Marc Chagall.
The pieces come from the artist’s estate and have never been offered for sale before.
With attractive estimates ranging from €1,000 to €200,000, it is an exciting event for those interested in acquiring a piece of Chagall’s exceptional body of work.
Images: Christie’s Images Limited 2023