Marc Zakharovich Chagall was born in Belarus in 1887 and developed an early interest in art. After studying painting, in 1907 he left Russia for Paris, where he lived in an artist colony on the city’s outskirts. Fusing his own personal, dreamlike imagery with hints of the fauvism and cubism popular in France at the time, during this period Chagall created his most lasting work—including I and the Village (1911)—some of which would be featured in the Salon des Indépendants exhibitions of 1912 to 1914. After returning to Vitebsk for a visit in June 1914, the outbreak of World War I trapped Chagall in Russia, where he continued to paint, was married and held government posts following the 1917 revolution. He returned to France in 1923 and did extensive etching work but was forced to flee the country following the Nazi invasion during World War II. Finding asylum in the United States for the duration of the war, Chagall became involved in set and costume design before returning to France for good in 1948. In his later years, he experimented with new art forms and was commissioned to produce numerous large-scale works, such as murals and stained glass windows. Chagall died in St.-Paul-de-Vence in 1985.
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