Marc Restellini is probably one of the greatest international experts on the painter Amedeo Modigliani. After years of research into the artist’s work, Modigliani’s œuvre is the core of the preparation of a catalogue raisonné under the supervision of Marc Restellini. This new catalogue raisonné is based on innovative techniques and more than 600 scientific analyses. This space is dedicated to Modigliani’s oeuvre and to the works carried out by the Institut Restellini as part of the Catalogue Raisonné, which is devoted to him.
Marc Restellini: A Freelance Expert
Most experts are gallery directors, or people associated in one way or another with the art market; for example, they receive a commission on the sale of an object. They are thus both judge and jury. Marc Restellini is independent of the art market, his fees being set on the basis of the technique of the work (oil on canvas, drawing with colour, or drawing without colour) and payable, whatever the findings of the expert report, before depositing the work, to the account of the Institut Restellini. Added to this are:
- a long-term familiarity with the major works of the artist (Netter Collection)
- direct access to the “primary” archives, those of Roger Dutilleul, Paul Guillaume, Jonas Netter, among others
- a body of scientific (chemical) analyses of more or less half the painted oeuvre, with the masterpieces acting as a yardstick, and a reference for works recently come to notice, either contested or to be confirmed.
Marc Restellini started to work on Modigliani in the late 1980s, and then from 1997 to January 2015, in collaboration with the Wildenstein Institute, as the author of the Catalogue Raisonné of the paintings and the drawings.
During this work and the many different exhibitions he organized, both in Japan and in Europe, about the École de Paris, and more particularly about Modigliani, he proceeded to make systematic scientific and comparative analyses of the pictures which were then at his disposal. He relies on the corpus for his expert reports.
Oils: only portraits and nudes (except for four landscapes painted in the South of France—more to try out another style than because he liked them, a test that was swiftly abandoned—and possibly a landscape painted in his youth). No still lifes.
Mainly portraits of women and children (two-thirds of the complete œuvre), one-third portraits of men.
WHERE TO SEE MODIGLIANI’S WORKS:
- in Paris: essentially at the MNAM (Musée National d’Art Moderne – Centre Georges Pompidou) and at the Musée de l’Orangerie (Collection Paul Guillaume);
- Villeneuve d’Ascq, LaM (Lille Métropole): collection Roger Dutilleul;
- Museums of Troyes, Nancy, Rouen, Grenoble.
Major museums in the world (a non-exhaustive listing):
- Milan (Pinacoteca di Brera), Rome (Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Moderna), Oslo (Nasjonalgalleriet), Berlin (Nationalgalerie);
- Jerusalem (Israel Museum);
- New York (Metropolitan Museum of Art, Museum of Modern Art), Chicago (Art Institute of Chicago), Dallas Museum of Art, Houston (Museum of Fine Arts), Philadelphia (Barnes Foundation), New Orleans Museum of Art, Saint Louis Art Museum, Washington (Phillips Collection), Toledo Museum of Art…;
- Buenos Aires (Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes);
- Melbourne (National Gallery of Victoria);
- Japan (New Otani Art Museum, Ohara Museum of Art, Osaka City Museum of Modern Art)…
On the subject of the exhibition Modigliani, L’Œil intérieur at the LaM in Villeneuve d’Ascq-Lille Métropole (Spring 2016), let us bear in mind that the catalogue deals with:
- 39 paintings (exhibited)
- 49 drawings (exhibited)
- 5 sculptures (exhibited)
In other words, 93 works by Modigliani in all (but without any work from the very large Netter Collection).
To reach the 114 numbers featuring in the catalogue: additional works by Soutine, Brancusi, Kisling, indigenous arts, etc.
In comparison, the Modigliani retrospective, The Melancholy Angel, organized by Marc Restellini at the Musée du Luxembourg in Paris in 2002-2003, showed:
- 102 paintings (exhibited)
- 41 drawings (exhibited)
- 1 sculpture
i.e. 144 works by Modigliani in all.
All the artworks have been subject to systematic scientific analyses.
The quality of an exhibition obviously cannot be gauged by the number of works on view, but this example simply demonstrates that Marc Restellini has at his disposal a very large scientific database to back up his expert reports, which make him a quintessential authority.