«Isaku Yanaihara posant pour Giacometti dans son atelier», Paris, 1960, archives Fondation Giacometti

14 Dec 2020

Giacometti and Yanaihara, the artist and his model

Emilie Bouvard
Paris, France

During lockdown, the Fondation Giacometti's research team offers a series of live conferences.

In October 1955, Giacometti gets to know a young Japanese philosophy professor, Isaku Yanaihara (1918 - 1989). He is particularly interested in existentialism. A profound understanding operates between the two men throughout the months, so much so that Giacometti asks for him to pose in October 1956. Isaku would come back during the summers of 1957, 1959, 1960 and 1961. From these sittings, and from memory, there are about 21 paintings and 2 busts, as well as a few drawings. This extraordinary and striking event is recounted in several of Yanaihara's books, which serve as precious reference points when understanding the particular relationship that Giacometti entertains with his models. This will be the subject of this lecture presented by Emilie Bouvard, head of collections at the Fondation Giacometti. 

Online lecture recorded on Zoom. 


Emilie BOUVARD - Giacometti et Yanaihara, l'artiste et le modèle

To search for a work, consult the Alberto Giacometti Database