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Paris Montparnasse, 1917. Artists sail through life with no thought of tomorrow. The prince of this bohemian life, Amedeo Modigliani, dreams of changing the world with his brush strokes. But his taste for opium and absinthe, his passion for women and the craziness of these times are some of the challenges he will have to face.
Modi is about to become a legend…
Following his best-seller The Last Days Days of Stefan Zweig, the new play by Laurent Seksik evokes the last three years of Amedeo Modigliani’s life until his first success in London; his relationships with his lover Jeanne Hébuterne, with her disapproving and overbearing mother Eudoxie, and his art dealer Léopold Zborowski.
In 1917, Modigliani meets nineteen-year-old art student Jeanne Hébuterne, who leaves her family to share his attic room in Montparnasse. She brings into his bohemian life everything he had dreamed of; grace, love, admiration, devotion. He tirelessly sketches her.
But Mogidliani is as paradoxical as his paintings; passionate but inconstant, his love for Jeanne undermined by his nights with tramps. Even Zlobowski must endure his relentless sarcasm and rage. Constrained by illness and addiction to drink and drugs to abandon sculpture, he is a man for whom painting is a struggle, a painful obsession. While his peers Picasso, Matisse and Soutine are already flirting with consecration, his first one-man exhibition at Gallery Weill provokes outrage, and his nude paintings are taken off the walls. Towards the end of the First World War, Modigliani leaves Paris with a pregnant Jeanne and travels to Nice, where she gives birth to their daughter Jeanne.
In 1919, they return to Paris and Jeanne becomes pregnant again. With the help of Osbert Sitwell, Zborowski arranges a show of French art at the Mansard Gallery in London. It is a success, the first one for Modigliani, and one of his works sells for the highest price. But Modigliani is seriously ill and he dies in January 1920. Glory will be posthumous.
A sensitive evocation of Amedeo Modigliani, who died in poverty at the threshold of his fame at the turn of the twentieth century.
Born in 1962, Laurent Seksik is a former doctor who became a best-selling writer. His most popular novels and plays include The Case of Eduard Einstein, The Last Days of Stefan Zweig, Modigliani and Far from Phoenix, soon to be published by Salammbo Press.