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fairytale Saint-Paul-de-Vence, a city synonymous with art, and where he lived „suspended between heaven and earth‟. Born in a village that was then part of the Russian Empire…Chagall was captivated from childhood by how, “…angels are rhymed or combined with human ones.” “Love and fantasy, go hand in hand. If I create from the heart, nearly everything works; if from the head, almost nothing. Color is everything, color is vibration like music; everything is vibration. I have always painted pictures where human love floods my colors.”
At 23, Chagall came to Paris from Russia to study. His sensibilities about art grounded in poetry, and conceived as "emerging from the internal being outward, from the seen object to the psychic outpouring.” In France, his daydreams were of Russian folklore, his family, and Bella, whom he longed to marry. While Paris life intoxicated his senses—with the warm smell of fresh baked bread, the sights of colorful fresh fruit and vegetable markets, the light on the Seine, the gilded monuments, and sidewalk cafes populated with fellow émigrés from the Russian Empire. He painted all night till dawn—his quirky motifs emerging like dreams. He and Bella were finally, blissfully married. Across the border in Germany, the Nazis began destroying artworks and especially condemned Chagall's “assault on Western civilization.” When France was invaded and occupied the couple suddenly woke up to the danger they faced--shocked by the speed at which France collapsed. They were trapped. Like many Russian Jews they fled to Marseilles hoping to emigrate to America, along with…”…enough doctors, psychologists, engineers, educationalists, poets, painters, writers, musicians, economists and public men to vitalize a whole great country.” The Chagalls were saved when the New York
Museum of Modern Art listed him among artists at risk. They left France, "when it was almost too late". In early September 1944, Bella died suddenly from an untreated infection due to wartime medicine shortages. Chagall returned to France in 1947 to live in SaintPaul where he spent pleasant afternoons at the famed La Colombe d‟Or absorbed with the company of fellow artists like F. Scott Fitzgerald, Matisse, Renoir, Modigliani, Braque, Picasso, Miró, Calder, Cocteau, D H Lawrence. Chagall's art of life was creating new realities with the romantic overtones of a charmed world colored of love. For links to his museum, a wonderful documentary on Chagall, a short video of Saint-Paul, And two recipes to bring Saint-Paul‟s artistic, romantic spirit into your home: Herbes de Provence Rotisserie and Soupe de Pistou—Click here: http://www.frenchheart.com