September 23, 1964 – Chagall’s ceiling unveiled

September 23, 1964 – Chagall’s ceiling unveiled

The Paris Opéra unveils a stunning new ceiling painted as a gift by Belorussian-born artist Marc Chagall, who spent much of his life in France.

Chagall’s Russian soul and Jewish heritage stirred his love for folklore and biblical themes. Before the advent of surrealism, he painted fantastical paintings that were among the first expressions of psychic reality in modern art.

Among his most famous works are paintings such as I and the Village (1911); his series of 12 stained-glass windows symbolizing the tribes of Israel (1960-61); the two vast murals he painted for New York’s Metropolitan Opera House (1966); and the sets and costumes he designed for various operas and ballets.

He continued to work vigorously until his death in 1985 at the age of 97.