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Chagall, Picasso, Mondrian and others

Chagall, Picasso, Mondrian and others

Migrants in Paris

Text by Sophie Tates
Text by Radna Fabias


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  • A catalogue to accompany the Chagall, Picasso, Mondrian and others: Migrants in Paris exhibition at the Stedelijk Museum from 21 Sep 2019 until 2 Feb 2020
Full Description

At the beginning of the last century, Marc Chagall, Pablo Picasso, Piet Mondrian and other acclaimed and unknown artists moved to Paris, the art capital of the world. They learnt to survive in a society that was becoming increasingly polarised, nationalistic, xenophobic and anti-Semitic. This exhibition and accompanying publication tells the story of artists in a foreign country who, despite adverse conditions, had the courage to take art to new heights. The show is an incredible chance to see the work of the great modern masters in a new light, and to discover new artists.

Today, Chagall, Picasso and Mondrian are known as Masters of Modern Art, but behind their role as artistic pioneers lay struggle - all three, from different backgrounds, were migrants. In spite of their success and achievement, they faced the same insurmountable obstacle: they were not French. Picasso, born in Spain, arrived in Paris penniless, where he flourished as a creative genius. And yet he remained loyal to his Spanish roots, and often identified with being 'different', a sentiment he frequently explored in his work. As a Jewish-Russian in exile, Chagall faced loneliness, exclusion and outright anti-Semitism. Often packed with Jewish-Russian imagery like rabbis and synagogues, his paintings convey a sense of deep nostalgia. In his early years, the Dutchman Kees van Dongen also encounterd difficulties. He eventually became one of Paris' celebrated society painters, but in 1906 he complained that the newspapers consistently portrayed him as the sale étranger, or 'the dirty foreigner'.

The exhibition Chagall, Picasso, Mondrian and Others: Migrant Artists in Paris shows work of, amongst others: Emmy Andriesse, Karel Appel, Eva Besnyö, Marc Chagall, Sonia Delaunay, Kees van Dongen, Gisèle Freund, Natalia Goncharova, Wassily Kandinsky, Germaine Krull, Wifredo Lam, Jacques Lipchitz, Paula Modersohn-Becker, Piet Mondriaan, Marlow Moss, Pablo Picasso, Man Ray, Diego Rivera, Gino Severini, Jan Sluijters, Chaim Soutine, Sophie Taeuber-Arp, Nicolaas Warb (Sophia Warburg), and Ossip Zadkine.

Exhibitions International
6th Dec 2019
Spiral bound
210 mm x 170 mm
71 Pages
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