Did you know that Chagall painted three versions of the Praying Jew (Rabbi of Vitebsk)?
Chagall painted the first version in 1914 during a visit to his native city of Vitebsk, which was prolonged by the outbreak of the First World War.
He subsequently painted two copies of the work on his return to Paris in 1923.
The sitter was a wandering beggar paid to pose in the traditional jewish prayer shawl and phylacteries (leather boxes containing scriptural passages) belonging to Chagall's father.
'Have you seen my portrait of the old man praying?
The Praying Jew (Rabbi of Vitebsk)
Marc Chagall, 1914
104 x 84 cm, Oil on canvas
The first version of the painting is now in the collection Im Obersteg in Bern, the second (shown) is in the Museo d'Arte Moderna in Venice, and the third is in the Art Institute of Chicago.