Today in History: Chagall’s Ceiling: Unveiling at the Paris Opera
Marc Chagall’s stunning masterpiece on the ceiling of the Paris Opera was presented to the public on September 23, 1964 in the presence of thousands of guests. His work, a gift to France, covered about 2,400 square feet and was painted in five colorful sections that evoked the imagination, dreams, and creations of singers and musicians. A Belorussian native of Jewish descent who spent many years in France, Chagall painted the ceiling at the age of 77, and, in 1977, France returned the honor with a retrospective exhibition of Chagall’s work at the Louvre.
The following articles are selected from Proquest Historical Newspapers, which informs and inspires classroom teaching and learning.
- Genauer, E. (1960, May 08). Early Years that Shaped an Artist. New York Herald Tribune (1926-1962)
- Gillie, D. (1963, Jul 24). A Lofty Task for Chagall. The Guardian (1959-2003)
- By Henry Kamm. Special to The New York Times. (1964, Sep 07). Marc Chagall Finds That at 77 a Man Has No Time for Rest. New York Times (1923-Current File)
- Special to The New York Times. (1964, Sep 24). Chagall Unveils Paris Opera Work. New York Times (1923-Current File)
- Marc Chagall’s Paris Opera—Ceiling Unlimited. (1964, Oct 04). Los Angeles Times (1923-Current File)
- By Jean-Pierre Lenoir. Special to The New York Times. (1965, Feb 23). Paris to Update Classic Theater. New York Times (1923-Current File)
- Mellow, J.R. (1978, Aug 06). The Flying Man. New York Times (1923-Current File)
- Sozanski, E. J. (1985, Jun 02). Chagall’s Fervent Love of Life Gave His Works Their Glory. Chicago Tribune (1963-Current File)
- Lynton, N. (1985, Mar 30). Painter of Joy. The Guardian (1959-2003)
- Fallon, B. (2008, Nov 22). The Love and Life of an Exile. The Irish Times (1921-Current File)
See Google Arts and Culture for detailed descriptions of the series of five panels painted by Chagall for the Palais Garnier; addressed are Chagall’s vision of the theater, composers and operas represented, design and dominant colors, and content of the masterpiece.
Check out ARTstor, a searchable database of digital images and associated catalog data, to see and learn about over 1,000 art works by Marc Chagall, including the Paris Opera ceiling,
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