This is one of my books-of-the-year winner! Paris in the 1920s with Kiki de Montparnasse by Xavier Girard presents a detailed history of one of the most crucial times in our cultural, political, philosophical, and artistic histories, delving into the lives of those who sought to change our minds and perspective from some of Paris' iconic places such as La Coupole, La Rotonde, and Le Dôme.
Available for purchase on assouline.com, this luxury slipcase volume is an opulent compilation of images and personal anecdotes, a visual timeline of an era experienced by a woman whose passion for living was unrivaled.
From humble origins, Kiki de Montparnasse became the muse of Man Ray, Kisling, Foujita, Calder, and other important artists living in Paris in the Roaring Twenties. Many revolutionary writers, artists, and personalities flourished on the bohemian Left Bank, each one inventing their own iconic style, and Kiki, the Queen of Montparnasse, was the thread connecting them.
Not only an artist’s model, Kiki was also a cabaret performer, actress, and an artist in her own right with two successful exhibitions. Every image tells a fascinating story in this lavishly illustrated, oversize luxury slipcase volume, revealing the artistic, social, and historical events that created and surrounded the incredible artistic flowering of the now mythical Montparnasse neighborhood.
"We hang out with a crowd called Dadaists and some called Surrealists— for my part, I don’t see much difference between them! ...Our nights are spent in talking, which doesn’t bore me very much, even if I don’t know what it’s about."
- Kiki de Montparnasse