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c. 1916-1917
Marc Chagall (French (born Vitebsk, Russian Empire), 1887–1985)
In 1916 Chagall was commissioned by the Petrograd Jewish Society for the Promotion of the Arts to create a series of large-scale murals of religious festivals for a Jewish secondary school attached to the main synagogue in Petrograd (formerly Saint Petersburg). Purim refers to the Jewish festival that commemorates the saving of the Jews from the cruelty of the Persian King Ahasuerus and his chief minister, Haman. The annual celebration involves exchanging food and sweets, as seen in Chagall’s mural study, in which two adults prepare to exchange gifts against a field of red that conveys the heightened sense of emotion attached to this joyous religious festival.

Object Details

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