CHAGALL, MARC. (1887-1985). Russian-born, French artist known for his highly personal, fantastical imagery inspired by Russian-Jewish folk themes and village life. Signed and dated sheet of stamps. (“Marc Chagall”). 1p. Oblong 4to. N.p., 1977. A pristine sheet of Israeli stamps featuring Chagall’s stained glass window representing the Hebrew tribe of Joseph, signed and dated in blue ink on the upper margin.
Signed Sheet of Colorful Israeli Stamps Featuring his Stained Glass Window for the Tribe of Joseph
Signed by Marc Chagall
A prolific artist with a unique, dream-like style, Chagall’s works include painting, tapestries, illustrations, ceramics, and murals. His art combined Cubism, Expressionism and Symbolism to bring a unique sense of lightheartedness to Jewish themes.
Chagall’s first major project in stained glass was the church at Assy 1956, followed by windows for the cathedral of Metz, a project that lasted from 1958 to 1960. In 1960, Chagall began work on a set of 12 stained glass windows for the Abbell Synagogue at the Hadassah University Medical Center. Each window depicts one of the twelve tribes of Israel through their traditional symbols as well as animals, flowers, trees, and architecture. After their creation in his Cote d’Azur studio, the windows were exhibited at the Louvre in Paris and New York’s MoMA before their installation in Jerusalem in February 1962. At the dedication, the artist proclaimed, “This is my modest gift to the Jewish people, who have always dreamt of biblical love, friendship and of peace among all people. This is my gift to that people which lived here thousands of years ago among the other Semitic people.” Chagall continued to work in stained glass, creating windows for the United Nations building in New York and churches in the English towns of Tudeley and West Sussex and Mainz, Germany.
Chagall’s window for the Tribe of Joseph is both colorful and symbolic of the “coat of many colors” given to the prophet Joseph by his father Jacob. A faint crease not affecting the writing is in the upper right corner; otherwise very fine.