Paris from Chagall's window

Paris from Chagall's window
Paris from Chagall's window

This oil painting was painted in 1913 by the Russian painterMarc Chagall, during his first and most inspiring stay inParis. Today the work is kept in theGuggenheim Museum in New York, and we can consider it one of the most representative canvases of this artist's very personal style and also a magnificent sample of the peculiar personality of him.


Paris from Chagall's window

The work brings together all the ingredients of his painting at the same time, which draws from the most diverseartistic vanguardsof the moment. On the one hand, the strong color he uses is indebted to Fauvism. While the predominant geometric shapes that organize the set and each of the elements are of cubist inspiration. At the same time, the overflowing imagination that he captures with his images could well be related toSurrealism.

These and other artistic currents were in full swing in those years in Paris, and Chagall associated with creators belonging to all of them. However, his style is somewhat unclassifiable and has its own linguistic and thematic codes

As in so many other works by Chagall, they are scenes open to the viewer's interpretation. For example, here it is interpreted as a hymn to the French capital, which welcomed him so well and so much creativity overflowed in thefirst years of the 20th century. A city that is obviously represented by its most iconic architectural symbol, the Eiffel Tower.

And from there there are a number of very personal symbols. Starting with this double face, which looks in two directions, and is even painted in two different color ranges, both equally unnatural. Many scholars think that it is a representation of the painter himself, who gazes in fascination towards that bright and modern France where he lives, but at the same time looks back at his Russiabackward and poor from which he has fled. A character who even has his heart outside his body and carries it in one hand.

But there are more puzzles in the box. For example, a cat with a human face that seems to lean out of the window sill to contemplate the city or to see how a small parachutist descends from the sky.

Another image of strange meaning is that train that runs backwards, or the couple of man and woman who float head to head in a horizontal position on the waters of the Seine. In short, Chagall leans out the window and shows us his world, outside, but also inside, and we don't always know how to understand it.

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