CHAGALL, Marc; BACHELARD, Gaston (introduction).

Drawings for the Bible.


Drawings for the Bible.

Paris & New York, 1960.


Chagall’s celebrated illustrations for the Bible, with 24 additional colour lithographs specially made for this Verve edition.

‘Since early youth, I have been captivated by the Bible. It seemed and still seems to me the greatest source of poetry of all time. Since then, I have sought out its reflection in life and in art. The Bible as it were resonates in nature, and it is this secret I try to convey’ (Marc Chagall).

In this beautiful portfolio, produced in Paris under the direction of the well-known publisher Tériade, Marc Chagall (1887-1985) continued his exploration of the Bible, as a source of inspiration for his drawings. The publication capitalises on Chagall’s first cycle titled Illustrations for the Bible, which had been specially commissioned by Ambroise Vollard, the great art dealer and publisher of artist books, and was published by Tériade for Verve in two volumes in 1956.

In the present work, Chagall additionally included scenes of the Old Testament’s ‘great dramas’ drawn in 1958-59 , among which one finds the story of the Garden of Eden, Cain and Abel, the flood, the golden calf, Jonah and the whale, David and Goliath etc.


First American edition of this double issue of Verve, 37/38, with additional title-page in English. Folio (35.5 x 26 cm), [17] pp, 24 original colour lithographs by Chagall printed by Mourlot, 96 black and white photogravures printed by the brothers Draeger and reproducing the etchings made by Chagall for the Illustrations for the Bible, [16] pp. Text by Gaston Bachelard translated into English by Stuart Gilbert. Publisher’s pictorial boards depicting David, Bathsheba and God; moderate edgewear, the spine showing some separation, remains of the original dust wrapper, corners slightly bumped.


Sorlier 75; Cramer 42.


Stock ID: 88798