Marc Chagall The Odyssey Lithographs


After two visits to Greece in 1952 and 1954, Chagall drew much of his inspiration from the mythological motifs dated from Greek Antiquity. It is said of Chagall that he had a Greek view of humanism; the human is only unveiled in divine light while, derived of God, man exists in obscurity and without differentiation. In the tribute he pays to Homers epic poem with the publication of "The Odyssey" in 1974 and 1975, Marc Chagall illustrates precisely the main stages of the text, in a rare delight of fresh and vivid colors. Some of the lithographic images printed required as many as 20 color layers.

Chagall captures the atmosphere of the epic through his depictions of the landscape characterized by the sea and Antic Temples, intense sunlight and in his fantastic figures of the Minotaur, Gilgamesh, angelsÖ, which act as visible signs of the roles played by the Gods. With their meaningful gestures, the human figures conjure up precisely and tenderly the liveliness of Mediterranean populations.

"The Odyssey" is a two volume work. The first volume was completed on the 5th of December 1974. The second was completed on the 20th of June 1975. The text of the, translated by Darcier, revised and compiled Emile Ripert, was composed in a typescript created and engraved by Claude Garamount. Now the exclusive property of the Imprimerie Nationale, this work was printed on state presses. Chagall's lithographs for "The Odyssey" were run off the presses of the Mourlot workshop in Paris. Two hundread and fifty copies were printed, numbered 1-250. Twenty copies numbered in Roman Numerals were reserved for the artist and his collaborators. The printing was carried out on large Arches wove paper. Each copy was signed by the artist on the limitation notice page figuring at the beginning of the first volume. None of the proofs in the first book were signed. In addition, 30 numbered signed proofs on Japan nacreous paper with wide margins were printed of all the colored plates and reserved for the artist and the publisher. Due to a printing error, the proofs numbered 24 to 30 of the plate Ulysses and Penelope (823) were run off on Arches wove paper instead of Japan nacreous paper. The publisher was Fernand Mourlot.

Please contact Georgetown Frame Shoppe if you are interested in buying, selling or consignment of an original color lithograph from the Bible series made by Marc Chagall. We also carry original Marc chagall art, etchings, lithographs, posters, etchings, and linocut prints from other Marc chagall suites such as the Odyssey, Daphnis and Chloe, Arabian Nights, Drawings for the Bible and Illustrations of the Bible.


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