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The Reproduction Process

Reclining Nude with Loose Hair. The painting by Amedeo Modigliani
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Reclining Nude with Loose Hair

Italian Expressionist and starving artist Amedeo Modigliani was presented, in 1917, with the opportunity of a lifetime. Under the patronage of Polish poet Léopold Zborowski, the artist would have a solo exhibition in Paris to present his art truly within the art market proper, which could be his chance to launch himself as a successful influencer. To that end, his patron Léopold would encourage him to produce a collection of paintings focused on his most scandalous subject matter, the nudes.

Now, it’s not to say that the painting of the nude was taboo in the early 20th century. Quite the opposite, in fact, since the female nude was one of the central subject matters explored by academic painters. The problem, so to speak, was in Modigliani’s approach to the female nude, for, instead of portraying the female nude exclusively for the male gaze, a subdued being placed on the canvas with the sole objective of pleasing the male necessity of objectifying the female body, Modigliani would choose to lend agency to his nudes. What this means is that the artist would portray his models in a position of power over their bodies, in a way that makes it clear that the woman depicted is in control of the situation, and is posing of her own free will, maybe even deriving pleasure from the experience of having her shapes immortalized in oil.

This oil on canvas, painted especially for the 1917 solo show, exemplifies that attitude. Now in possession of the Osaka City Museum of Modern Art, through a donation made by a Japanese collector and art critic, who purchased the piece in Paris and first exhibited it in Japan in 1934. It is comparable to, if not influential on, paintings such as Olympia, by Manet, or Maja Desnuda, by Goya, for Modigliani’s exhibit is considered by many to have been one of the main driving forces behind this new attitude towards the female nude body.

Here, the model is portrayed with glistening bright eyes, firmly locked on the painter, and a slight grin on her lips, showing her confidence in her body, even something of an understated pleasure in the situation. Her hand is over her genitalia, but it is not clear, from the gesture she makes, whether she is hiding it or touching it invitingly

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Reclining Nude with Loose Hair Amedeo Modigliani

Item Number: 15399946 show sizes in cm
Painting Price: $352.99
Total Price: $352.99
you SAVE 55% Compared to Local Galleries $635.38
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