Lost and found Modigliani art

Les Deux Filles, 1918

Les Deux Filles, 1918

According to Andrew Johnson of The Independent, UK, a rare work by Modigliani went up for auction for the first time in February, 2009 by Christies. Les Deux Filles, painted by Modigliani in 1918 in the south of France, is one of only 5 double portraits painted by the artist. This painting has been in the collection of a single family for almost a hundred years. Les Deux Filles was bought from Modigliani by the collector Jonas Netter.

Unknown painting by Modigliani found in Serbia, circa 1918,

Unknown painting by Modigliani found in Serbia, circa 1918, courtesy of a private collection

On September 25, 2007, Ksenija Prodanovic of Reuters in Belgrade reported that an unknown painting by Italian painter, Amedeo Modigliani, would be exhibited in Belgrade in November of that same year. The painting is a “Portrait of a man” dating from circa 1918 and belongs to an anonymous Serbian collector. The president of the Modigliani Institut Archives Legales Paris-Rome, Christian Parisot, said that the painting was authentic. Parisot states that, “It took us 17 years to verify the authenticity and I can now say for certain that it is Modigliani.” The painting exhibits a well-dressed young man with neatly combed hair. Experts said that the oil paints used in the painting had been diluted, a clue that the artist was not wealthy and was trying to make his paints last as long as possible. The identity of the young man was not known, but Parisot “was hoping that somebody would recognize it, once the painting was presented.” City hall officials in Belgrade said the owner of the painting requested that the painting be exhibited for the first time in Belgrade.

Portrait of Rosalie Tobia, unknown date, abandoned in staff lavatory in Bergamo airport

Portrait of Rosalie Tobia, unknown date, abandoned in staff lavatory in Bergamo airport

On February 28, 2007, Richard Owen, a writer for the UK Times (Timesonline), reported that international art experts were called in to identify a Modigliani painting that had been abandoned in a staff lavatory in Bergamo airport. The painting was found wrapped in a sheet inside a packing box. “It was ready to be slipped through airport controls on to a plane,” a police spokesman said. The painting is a portrait of a woman believed to be Rosalie Tobia who worked as an artist’s model in Paris. Modigliani had painted her several times. Experts say that if the painting is genuine, it would be worth at least €1 million (£670,000). The painting was being held by the Carabinieri art theft squad in Monza.

 

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