Marc Chagall, who was born on this day in 1887, was best known for his dreamlike and folk art-inspired paintings. Shortly after marrying Bella Rosenfeld in July 1915, Chagall embarked on a series of wedding portraits that continued until his wife’s premature death in 1944. “In the Night” depicts the newlyweds embracing in a nocturnal scene of Vitebsk. Chagall’s depiction of his hometown also includes a whimsical floating cow, barely outlined in the black night sky, and a hanging lamp. The conflation of these interior and exterior elements allows the couple to inhabit their own world, where their experience of each other brings back their shared memories of their years together.

In the Night,” 1943, by Marc Chagall © Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / ADAGP, Paris