Marc Chagall: Stolen Painting Recovered
In January 1996, a painting by Marc Chagall was stolen from the Gordon Gallery in Tel Aviv. The painting, titled Jacob’s Ladder, went missing for nearly twenty years.
It finally turned up in 2015, at the home of an elderly woman who lived in Jerusalem. The woman had kept the painting in a vault, never hung it in her home. After her death, it was bequeathed to her nephew, who had it authenticated. That’s when he discovered that the painting had been stolen and that the insurance company had paid the gallery for its loss.
The insurance company wanted to recoup the money it had paid out for stolen painting. After a court case in Tel Aviv, it was ruled that the painting go to the insurance company. The company auctioned the painting, which is about 8 1/2 x 11 inches, for the amount that it had paid out in 1996…just $130,000.
Jacob’s Ladder was sold to an anonymous buyer, who got an incredibly good deal, considering the prices that Chagall’s work has recently garnered at auction.
In 2017, Les Amoureux, a painting of Chagall and Bella, his first wife and muse, sold at Sotheby’s in New York in 2017 for a record $28.45 million.
Marc Chagall’s poetic images made him one of the most celebrated artists of the twentieth century. He was a painter, printmaker, set designer and created extraordinary stained glass windows for the United Nations, an incredible ceiling mural at the Paris Opera House and wondrous murals at the Metropolitan Opera in New York.
His floating figures, color filled backgrounds and the dream-like quality of his work make them instantly recognizable.
“The dignity of the artist lies in his duty of keeping awake the sense of wonder in the world.” he wrote, “In this long vigil he often has to vary his methods of stimulation; but in this long vigil hie is also himself striving against a continual tendency to sleep.”
Pablo Picasso at the Royal Academy
Pablo Picasso loved to work with paper. He drew on it, cut, printed and painted on it. Picasso and Paper is the title, and the subject, of a current exhibit at the Royal Academy of Arts in London. The exhibit includes more than 300 works on paper, spanning the artist’s 80-year career.
Picasso and Paper will be on exhibit through April, 2020.
Some of Picasso’s drawings and ceramic works will be auctioned at Sotheby’s London this month. The works were inherited from the artist by his granddaughter, Marina Picasso, when he died in 1973. Marina is the daughter of Picasso’s son Paulo, from his first marriage to Russian ballet dancer Olga Khokhlova. The collection includes highly sought-after ceramic works that Picasso kept throughout his lifetime.
Picasso was inspired to work with clay in 1946, when he visited Vallauris in the south of France, home of many pottery studios. He moved to the area in 1948 and established a relationship with Madoura ceramics.
He experimented with a variety of clays and glazes, resulting in hundreds of elegant and whimsical pieces.
Works by Marc Chagall and Pablo Picasso at Surovek Gallery
Marcy Oster. Stolen Marc Chagall painting sells for $130,000 at auction in Israel. Arizona Jewish Post. January 30, 2020.
Karen Chernick. A prized Marc Chagall painting was stolen in the ’90s. It has resurfaced at an Israeli auction. Jewish Telegraph Agency. January 23, 2020.
Eileen Kinsella. Picasso’s Granddaughter Is Selling a Trove of His Unique—and Highly Coveted—Ceramic Works at Sotheby’s London Next Month. artnetnews. January 29, 2020. Michael Juul Holm. Picasso: Ceramics. Louisiana Museum of Modern Art. August 28, 2018.