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Sons of Zion Lecture Series begins with Chagall lecture

HOLYOKE – Congregation Sons of Zion will kick off a new lecture series with “The Artist, the Bible, and What the Pope Said: Le Message Biblique de Marc Chagall,” with Dr. Simon P. Sibelman on Sunday, Oct. 28 at 10 a.m.  Lunch will follow the lecture.

Chagall’s art is easily identifiable by its floating lovers, fiddlers on roofs, goats, flying fish, and the artist’s vivid use of color. But what does it all mean? How do those elements enhance our knowledge of the world from which Chagall emerged, and what do they say about his artistic vision?

In his lecture, Dr. Simon Sibelman will explore these questions and others emerging from Chagall’s artistic universe before focusing on his largest canvases that became the core for the Musée National – Message Biblique de Marc Chagall in Nice, France, a gift from the French government to honor the artist. Opening its artistic doors in 1973, the museum houses Chagall’s reflections on some of the foundational stories of the Jewish people and their universal message.

Dr. Sibelman is a native of Richmond, Va. and a graduate of the University of Richmond and King’s College, University of London. He has taught in many universities in the US and abroad. Dr. Sibelman has received grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Ashdown Trust, and the French Ministry of Culture. He has authored several books and lives in Western Mass.

Sons of Zion is at 378 Maple St. in Holyoke. (Use the accessible Cabot St. door.) Donation request but not required. For more information, contact the synagogue office at (413) 534-3369 or

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