Had Gadya

Had Gadya (1919)

Had Gadya was created in 1919, which was earlier on Lissitzky’s career. Had Gadya is a famous piece by Lissitzky that focuses on the Jewish culture and traditions they had. This is an important piece in his work because this demonstrates his fondness of Jewish culture that is seen throughout the beginning of his work before he switches styles. Specifically Had Gadya is a song that is sung during Passover. This painting emphasizes the use of primary colors, black and white and geometric shapes that is seen throughout Lissitzky’s work. It is thought that this piece has inspiration from Chagall but has his own geometric twist on it. He is also famous for text in his images, and this is seen in this image, however in this image it is in Hebrew characters (Ryssen, 2005, July 6). While I am not sure what the text is saying, I can only imagine it is referencing the song itself. He also strategically uses color to go with the song. For example, in the song it is discussing how the cat kills the goat and then the dog kills the cat. In this specific image it is capturing the part where the cat kills the goat. The fact that he decides to make everything black and white, but chooses to make the cat red makes our attention automatically be drawn to the cat. His work is also a key example of suprematism. Suprematism is characterized by “basic geometric forms, such as circles, squares, lines and rectangles, painted in a limited range of colors” (Suprematism, n.d.). While he puts his own twist on it by adding in the animals, it still represents suprematism.