They discover Modigliani sketches hidden under one of his most famous works

Several unfinished works by Amedeo Modigliani, a painter born in Italy who worked in Paris before he died in 1920, were discovered in the Hecht Museum of the University of Haifa (Israel), after his work Nude with a Hat was subjected to an X-ray by a forensic study for the next exhibition of the artist's work in Philadelphia, USA.

NewsEditor
NewsEditor
16 July 2022 Saturday 21:13
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They discover Modigliani sketches hidden under one of his most famous works

Several unfinished works by Amedeo Modigliani, a painter born in Italy who worked in Paris before he died in 1920, were discovered in the Hecht Museum of the University of Haifa (Israel), after his work Nude with a Hat was subjected to an X-ray by a forensic study for the next exhibition of the artist's work in Philadelphia, USA.

Inna Berkowits, an art historian at the Hecht Museum, called it "a pretty amazing discovery," explaining how they were able to make "this inanimate object talk" through X-rays. "It's a sketchbook on a canvas," the expert described.

Modigliani is considered one of the great modernist artists of the 20th century. His work is characterized by long, thin necks and faces, a distinctive style influenced by Greek and African art that were all the rage in France at the same time.

In 2015, his work Reclining Nude fetched more than $170 million at auction. Making the painting one of the most expensive ever sold. The high demand for authentic works by Modigliani has spawned a thriving market for counterfeits.

Modigliani's Nude with a Hat from 1908 is considered an unusual painting. Both sides of the canvas contain portraits painted in opposite directions. Visitors to the galleries of the Hecht Museum come across a nude portrait face down.

In 2010, the museum's curator noticed the eyes of a third figure peeking out from under the neck of another. But only this year could the hidden image be revealed.

“When we decided to do the X-ray, we were just hoping to learn a little more about the hidden figure below Maud Abrantes,” Berkowits said.

Not only was there a woman hiding with a hat, but they found two more portraits that were completely invisible to the naked eye: one of a man and one of a woman with a bow in her hair.

The canvas is now known to contain five of his works, probably painted on top of each other out of a need to save money on new canvases.

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