Première of the film ‘Amadeo’

Amadeo, the film inspired by the life and work of the painter Amadeo de Souza-Cardoso, premièred on 26 January in cinemas throughout Portugal.
03 feb 2023

The most recent work by director Vicente Alves do Ó, it is a historical feature film inspired by the life and work of the painter born in Amarante, in 1887, who as a young man left for Paris, where he rubbed shoulders with Picasso, Gaudí, Modigliani, Apollinaire and the Delaunays.

Now regarded as one of the key artists of early-20th-century modernism, but whose importance was only discovered years later, after his death, Amadeo expressed in his painting languages such as cubism, futurism and expressionism, frequently achieving a level comparable to the finest international art production of the time.

The film recreates three significant moments in Amadeo’s life: the first major modernist exhibition in Portugal, organised by the young artist in 1916, which revealed a new world to an old and conservative country; the presentation of the first works to Paris’s artistic elite in 1911; and finally, the fateful year of 1918, when he succumbed to the Spanish flu pandemic that killed millions of people all over the world.

The film’s cast includes Rafael Morais, Ana Lopes, Lúcia Moniz, Ana Vilela da Costa, Manuela Couto, Ricardo Barbosa, Raquel Rocha Vieira, José Pimentão, Rogério Samora and Eunice Muñoz.

Produced by Pandora da Cunha Telles and Pablo Iraola, of Produtora Ukbar Filmes, Amadeo was supported by the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, which contributed images of the artist’s works belonging to the CAM Collection.

In 2006 and 2016, the FCG organised major retrospectives of Amadeo’s work. The exhibition Amadeo de Souza-Cardoso. Diálogo de Vanguardas (Amadeo de Souza-Cardoso. Avant-garde dialogues), which opened on the artist’s birthday and in the year marking exactly 100 years since his departure for Paris, 14 November 2006, aimed to turn a fresh gaze on the artist, in the hope of legitimising and including him in the history of contemporary art. The exhibition, which was held in the FCG head office building, in Lisbon, attracted more than 100 thousand visitors. A decade later, in 2016, the Foundation organised the exhibition Amadeo de Souza-Cardoso (1887-1918) in the Grand Palais, in Paris, the city that contributed to the maturing of his work, but where he remained little known by the general public. Held as part of the commemoration of the 60th anniversary of the FCG and the 50th anniversary of its Delegation in France, this exhibition welcomed more than 73 thousand visitors.

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