Oil on cardboard
100 х 81
State Russian Museum
In autumn 1914, Marc Chagall and his young wife Bella moved from Vitebsk to Petrograd, which continued to remain the artistic and intellectual centre of the Russian Empire. Chagall contributed to exhibitions and socialised with the intellectual elite of the Russian capital. Mirror is a poetic metaphor of life and the situation in which Chagall and Bella found themselves. The tiny figure of the sleeping woman and the Alexander Column reflected in the mirror symbolise both reality (Petrograd) and dreams. Like many works by Marc Chagall, this painting intermingles the fantastic with the everyday, creating a poetic image of the world in which the artist lived and worked.
Chagall, Marc (Shagal, Mark Zakharovich)
1887, Vitebsk - 1985, St Paul de Vence (France)
Painter, graphic artist. Studied at the Yehuda Pen School in Vitebsk (1906), School of Drawing, Society for the Encouragement of the Arts (1907-08), Seidenberg''s studio, under Mstislav Dobuzhinsky and Leon Bakst at the Elizaveta Zvantseva School of Drawing and Painting (1908-09) and in private studios in Paris (1910-14). Contributed to the exhibitions of the World of Art (1912), Donkey''s Tail (1912), Salon des Independants (1912-14) and Jack of Diamonds (1916). Lived in Vitebsk and Petrograd (from 1915), director of the Vitebsk School of Art. Moved to Moscow (1920) and worked for the Jewish Chamber Theatre. Illustrated Nikolai Gogol''s Dead Souls and La Fontaine''s frobtes for Ambroise Vollard. Designed the sets and costumes for a production of Igor Stravinsky''s ballet The Firebird (1945). Retrospective exhibition at the Museum of Modern An in New York (1946). Lived in Paris (from 1923), USA (from 1941) and St Paul de Vence (from 1950).