Modì 2.0: Modigliani Hoax Revisited [English & Italian]

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Filed under: Art Pranks

From Neural.it

Modi 2.0, Modigliani’s fake sculptures on e-bay

743b_1-200.jpg“It is twenty four years since four students from Livorno played their part in one of the greatest hoaxes in the history of Italian art. Their childish prank involving the rescue of Amedeo Modigliani’s lost sculptures fooled some of Italy’s most imminent art historians. It is believed that the 25 year old Modigliani thought that his sculptures would never be as good as his paintings and in a moment of despondency tossed them into the Fosso Mediceo, a local canal.

“In 1984, the 100th anniversary of Modigliani’s birth, Livorno’s Museum of Contemporary Art organised an exhibition of his sculptures. The Museum’s Curator Vera Durbè declared a challenge to find the legendary heads that had been thrown in the canal. One night after sculpting a stone head with a black and decker drill the students, Pietro Luridiana, Pierfrancesco Ferrucci, Michele Ghelarducci and Michele Genovesi secretly placed it in the canal. The next day, as the dredging began, workers found a sculpted head in the style of Modigliani. But to the students amazement it wasn’t the head they had made! The real sculptor was Angelo Froglia, a dockworker and artist, who later declared that his actions were a work of conceptual art that unmasked the faulty mechanisms of the art world.

“The head made by the students (Modì 2) was the second to be discovered and immediately had the country’s leading art historians confirming it’s authenticity! Twenty four years later, one of the hoaxers Michele Ghelarducci has decided to remake the head. The plan [was] to make it better than the first attempt. The new fake Modì 2.0 [was] auction[ed] on e-bay [June 17 to 24]. The proceeds of the sale [403 Euros, were] donated to the Grazia Focacci Foundation where the oncologist and researcher at the European Oncologic Institute Pier Francesco Ferrucci works today.”

image: eBay