Modigliani sculptor

  • Edited by Massimo de Sabbata
  • Binding Paperback with flaps
  • Size 24x28 cm
  • Pages 240
  • Illustrations 120 coloured
  • Language English
  • Year 2010
  • ISBN 9788836618873
  • Price € 35,00
  •   Not available

If we exclude the 1911 exhibition in the Parisian studio of the Portuguese painter Amadeo de Souza Cardoso and the one, still in Paris, at the 1912 Salon d’Automne, while Modigliani was still alive, this is the first exhibition totally dedicated to his sculptural work.
His painting has great success every time it appears while until today sculpture seems to have been only for the specialists. This part of his work seems to have less interest for the general public, perhaps also due to the small number of works carried out by the young artist from Livorno. The Milanese critic, Ambrogio Ceroni, who published the first documented catalogue regarding Modigliani’s sculpture in 1965, described and documented twenty-five sculptures, all of a quite good size. A small number, if compared to that of his paintings; however, twenty-five stone sculptures, carried out with the technique of direct carving on stone, not therefore according to the fashion of that time with modelling or casts, must be considered as really important, even more so because Modigliani dedicated at the most two years or just a little longer to this particular work. This book investigates the philological and stylistic problems, those concerning the authenticity and cultural context which have always characterised the history of his activity as a sculptor. In particular, some questions are at the centre of this research.

Did Modigliani really only carry out twenty-five sculptures? What models and inspirations were the sources for his creativity? Was there a reason why he abandoned sculpture, that he himself defined as his great passion? What relationship is there between his sculptures and his painting activity before and after his sculpting period?
Thanks to the retrieval of some unpublished or little known historical documents, to the study of sure sources, to the research of new documented relationships within the world of the sculptors who lived or exhibited in Paris during the first fifteen years of the last century, to the precise stylistic comparison of the many sources and tribal and oriental models, the legend of Modigliani sculptor leaves room for a linear account, which is of great interest and with important new findings.

Rovereto, December 2010 - March 2011


Modigliani, Sculptor Rediscovered
Gabriella Belli

Preliminary Issues for Modigliani Sculptor
Flavio Fergonzi

Worldly Primitivism, Orientalism for Museums
Alessandro Del Puppo

Modigliani, Modern Sculpture and the Influence of Antiquity
Kenneth Wayne

Modigliani: Lights and Shadows from the Past
Roberta Bartoli, Eike D. Schmidt

The Complex Identity of Sculpture: Comparisons and Debates in Paris between 1910 and 1912
Ilaria Cicali

Invisible Sculpture
Brigitte Léal

Ambrogio Ceroni. Short History of a Passionate Connoisseur
Anna Ceroni


Modigliani’s Sculptures

Section 1
Post-Rodin Options for the Sculptural Head in Paris

Section 2
Modigliani’s Beginnings as a Sculptor. Direct Carving on Stone, Precedents and Continuations

Section 3
Modigliani. The 1912 Salon d’Automne Heads: the Graphical Studies

Section 4
The 1912 Heads, between the Renaissance and Cubism

Section 5
Archaic Smiles and Oriental Faces

Section 6
The Sculptured Heads and the Parisian Suggestions of Tribal Art

Section 7
The Standing Figure: Primitivist Influences

Section 8
From Standing Figures to Caryatids

Section 9
Archaic Smiles and Oriental Faces



Amedeo Modigliani. Biographical Notes
Catalogue of Works in the Exhibition
Bibliography of the Essays and Entries in Catalogue
Exhibitions Related to the Essays and Entries in Catalogue