The Window, 1924 - by Marc Chagall

After Chagall's return to Paris on September i, 1923, he began to discover the countryside of France. Already during his first winter back he frequently spent a few days in LTsle Adam, in the country outside Paris, where his old friends Robert and Sonia Delaunay had a weekend cottage. In April 1924 he was in Normandy, and in June he went to the He de Brehat in the north of Brittany for a while.

It was here that The Window was painted.The landscape is sympathetically and lovingly described in great detail. In the front is the meadow plane with graceful little trees flickering in the light; then comes the heavier, darker area of the tree-girdled farmstead, protected by rocks in the meadowland; beyond that, the cape extends toward the lighthouse and meets the blank horizontal line of sea and island. The lovely, luminous double formation of the blue-and-white cloud brings all this pleasant expanse of landscape back into the foreground. The light unifies the two zones.

With these pictures Chagall shows he now feels truly at home in the landscape and light of France. His rapport with the natural beauty of France is echoed in the style of this picture; it is amazingly "French," though it is very difficult to suggest names for comparisons. The effect of the French light and landscape may have led spontaneously to a mode of expression closer to other French artists and - since Chagall is a well-informed and deeply thoughtful painter - may have awakened memories of Paul Cezanne, Edouard Manet or Claude Monet, which then had a slight influence upon his style.