Erotica

Modigliani’s 100 Years Old Nudes

Magda Michalska 17 May 2017 min Read

Amedeo Modigliani has always been one of my favourite portraitists: for his delicate lines with which he masterfully rendered the deepest depths of sitters' souls, their inner mysteries hidden in the almond-shaped eyes. Many people sat for him, his friends, his lover Jeanne Hébuterne, his patron Léopold Zborowski. Yet today I don't want to focus on typical portraits but many nudes that Modigliani painted in one significant year of 1917, so exactly a 100 years ago. [caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="620"]Amedeo Modigliani, Reclining Nude, 1917, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, modigliani nudes nude Amedeo Modigliani, Reclining Nude, 1917, The Metropolitan Museum of Art[/caption] It was Léopold Zborowski, Modigliani's friend and dealer, who was behind all this. He commissioned the series, lent the artist his apartment as a painting studio, supplied models and painting materials, and paid him between fifteen and twenty francs each day. [caption id="attachment_4848" align="aligncenter" width="620"]Amedeo Modigliani, Nude Looking Over Her Right Shoulder, 1917, Private Collection nudes modigliani nudes Amedeo Modigliani, Nude Looking Over Her Right Shoulder, 1917, Private Collection[/caption] Then he organized a show in Paris, also in 1917, which turned out to be a scandal.  The show was closed by police on its opening day because of the issues of obscenity. It was also the only solo exhibition during Modigliani's life. [caption id="attachment_4844" align="aligncenter" width="620"]Amedeo Modigliani, Nu couché, 1917-18, Private collection nudes modigliani nudes Amedeo Modigliani, Nu couché, 1917-18, Private collection[/caption] Nu couché was sold on 9 November 2015 for $170,405,000 which is a record for a Modigliani painting. This transcation placed it among the most expensive paintings in the world. [caption id="attachment_4845" align="aligncenter" width="620"]Amedeo Modigliani, Nude on a Blue Cushion, 1917, National Gallery of Art, Washington nudes modigliani nudes Amedeo Modigliani, Nude on a Blue Cushion, 1917, National Gallery of Art, Washington[/caption] There are only about 30 Modigliani nudes, less than 10 percent of his oeuvre. However, the scandalous exhibition apparently exhibited only 7 of them. [caption id="attachment_4850" align="aligncenter" width="377"]Amedeo Modigliani, Nude Seating On A Sofa, 1917, Private Collection nudes modigliani nudes Amedeo Modigliani, Nude Seating On A Sofa, 1917, Private Collection[/caption] The only thing that bugs me is the question: who were his models? We don't know anything about these young girls, painted so sensually by Modigliani. [caption id="attachment_4851" align="aligncenter" width="620"]Amedeo Modigliani,Nude With Necklace, 1917, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York City nudes Amedeo Modigliani, Nude With Necklace, 1917, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York City[/caption]

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