Monday, February 1, 2010

Magnificent, Marvellous, Mighty Monday and the Dreamer who never woke

He described himself as a dreamer who never woke up. Marc Chagall is my kind of person and artist. I have long admired his world of whimsical, fantastical beings and visions . He is a poet, a child, a madman. Pablo Picasso, not known for praising many artists, said that Chagall must have had an angel in his head to paint as he did.
Chagall was fearless and remained true to his own imaginative visions and world, rejecting the popular art of the day (abstraction and intellectual object paintings). Chagall's is a fantastic world of lovers who fly backwards, fiddlers with green faces or humans with rooster heads.
This outsider, eccentric genius rose from poverty and obscurity to become one of the most acclaimed artists of our time.
The French poet Guillaume Apollinaire described his paintings as “supernatural.” Whenever I feel jaded or uninspired, I only have to look at a Chagall painting to feel my sense of awe and wonder of this mysterious universe restored.
He was creating until the day he died, of course, at a very young 97. I can only imagine the angels flocked around this mystical child-artist when he departed this world.
A writer friend, Blaise Cendrars, composed a poem about Chagall: “Suddenly he paints / He grabs a church and paints with a church / He grabs a cow and paints with a cow.”
For Magnificent, Marvellous, Mighty Monday let us grab churches and cows and infuse our creative efforts with the joy and enthusiasm of a Marc Chagall. May we continue to see the world through fresh eyes every second and may we never allow ourselves to be pigeon-holed. Three cheers and a backwards flip for Marc Chagall.

If I create from the heart, nearly everything works; if from the head, almost nothing. Marc Chagall
The dignity of the artist lies in his duty of keeping awake the sense of wonder in the world. In this long vigil he often has to vary his methods of stimulation; but in this long vigil he is also himself striving against a continual tendency to sleep. Marc Chagall


  1. Chagall is one of my favourite artists too - I love the folk mythology and symbolism in his work, and the sheer love story of it all... thanks for this lovely celebration of him x

  2. Thanks Clara. He really inspires awe. Such incredible vision. There's a new book out on him too which I'm dying to read. A complex man but a magical heart man. xx

  3. i'm also a chagall fan. he really did have a unique and beautiful vision. thanks for the reminder of his lyrical, colour-saturated work. you've described it so well, the way it inspires wonder and evokes the possibility of magic of everyday life. p x

  4. You are welcome, Pinry. You always leave me such beautiful comments. You're a bit Chagall like yourself in the Bloggy world in that respect. xx

  5. Thank you for another great story. It's so very helpful when surrounded by those who are asleep, or like me, who are attempting to stave off sleep.

  6. Love Chagall and love dreamers... they make this world worth living in :)

  7. Chagall is one of my absolute faves. Super post.

  8. "If I create from the heart, nearly everything works; if from the head, almost nothing." I have always loved this quote Josephine but never knew who said it and the story. Thanks for sharing this.

  9. Yes, I agree with you...Chagall is beautiful. I once went to a church in france - I think it was in the town Metz if my memory serves correctly - where the stain glass windows were designed by him - wonderful. xxx

  10. I've never heard of him before but his art is amazing! Thanks for sharing!

  11. Christina, thanks for your comment. I am really honoured to have introduced you to the wonderful Marc Chagall.
    Curious Cat, his stained glass windows are stunning. Such a versatile artist and the lyrical way he used colour!
    Simone, it is a wonderful quote and motto to live.
    Willow, I imagine you would be a fan of Chagall's as you love dreams.
    Jennifer, we need all the dreamers we can get on this planet urgently!
    Laura, yes it's always difficult to attempt to wake and be conscious. That's where great art can help us to connect. xx


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