Marc Chagall, The Rainbow in the Sky, a Sign of Covenant between God and the Earth, detail, 1931. Gouache and oil on paper, Musée National Marc Chagall, Nice, France.
Marc Chagall (1887−1985) was born in the predominantly Jewish city of Vitebsk, Russia, where he was immersed in Jewish mystical belief. He moved to Paris in 1910 and became an early modernist, skilled in a variety of media including painting, stained glass, ceramics, and textiles. By the end of his long life, Chagall would become a recognized master of modern art. In this detail from The Rainbow in the Sky, Chagall paints Yahweh’s angel miraculously floating on an earthly rainbow, symbolizing the covenant between God and the Earth—or the people of Israel.