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Posted on July 6th, 2012, by

Marc Chagall is one of the prominent painters of the 20th century who influenced the development of painting and contributed to the “development of new trends in the 20th century painting”¯[1]. One of his works, “The Falling Angel”¯ is particularly noteworthy and it has influenced me significantly. I was really impressed by this painting and, probably, it is due to this painting I grew interested in the creative work of Mark Chagall, although I did not like cubism and modernist art much.

In fact, the painting depicts the falling angel, who is falling down upon a village or town, being surrounded by people, objects and buildings. The painting has plenty of symbols that makes it particularly interesting[2]. At the same time, I believe that it is important to take into consideration the background of the painter who “immigrated from Russia after the Revolution”¯[3]. I believe the angel symbolizes the revolution itself since the angel is depicted in bloody red color, which is strongly associated with blood, death and communist revolution in Russia. Right next to the angel, the painter depicted clocks which traditionally symbolize time, which remind us that our life is passing and everything comes to a logical end ”“ death, or fall in case of the angel. The falling angel symbolizes the failure of the Russian revolution, while people depicted in the painting attempt to run away or hide from the angel. The person depicted in the left bottom corner looks like a religious person who attempts to save some sacred texts, while the images of crucified Christ and some saints clearly indicates to the oppression of religion after the revolution.

In such a way, the painting depicts the quintessence of the artist’s perception of the tragic events and its effects that took place in his motherland. The painting attracts me due to its symbolism and aesthetic richness.



[1] Alexander, S. 1978. Marc Chagall: A Biography. New York: G.P. Putnam’s Sons, p.182.

[2] Harshav, B. ed. 2003. Marc Chagall on Art and Culture. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, p.147.

[3] Compton, S. 1985. Chagal. New York: Harry N. Abrams, p.225.

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