Marc Chagall
The Poet Reclining 1915

Artwork details

Marc Chagall 1887–1985
The Poet Reclining
Le Poète allongé
Date 1915
Medium Oil paint on cardboard
Dimensions Support: 772 x 775 mm
frame: 953 x 960 x 91 mm
Acquisition Purchased 1942
Not on display

Display caption

Chagall had just married his first wife Bella when he began this painting. It is a reverie in which he imagines himself outstretched in the Russian countryside where they spent their honeymoon. He remembered it as a place of 'wood, fir-trees, solitude. The moon behind the forest. The pig in the sty, the horse behind the window, in the fields. The sky lilac.' Though an idyllic scene, the figure seems oddly isolated. This may relate to the fact that Chagall painted it during the First World War, a conflict then being fought on Russian soil.

August 2004

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