Alice Prin

Alice Ernestine Prin (2 October 1901 – 29 April 1953), nicknamed Queen of Montparnasse, and often known as Kiki de Montparnasse, was a French artist model, nightclub singer, actress, memoirist, and painter. She flourished in, and helped define, the liberated culture of Paris in the early 1920s. Alice Prin was born in Châtillon-sur-Seine, Côte d'Or. An illegitimate child, she was raised in abject poverty by her grandmother. At age twelve, she was sent to live with her mother in Paris in order to find work. She first worked in shops and bakeries, but by the age of fourteen, she was posing nude for sculptors, which created discord with her mother. Adopting a single name, "Kiki", she became a fixture in the Montparnasse social scene and a popular artist model, posing for dozens of artists, including Chaim Soutine, "Julian Mandel" (a pseudonym), Tsuguharu Foujita, Francis Picabia, Jean Cocteau, Arno Breker, Alexander Calder, Per Krohg, Hermine David, Pablo Gargallo, Mayo, and Tono Salazar. Moise Kisling painted a portrait of Kiki titled Nu assis, one of his best known. Her companion for most of the 1920s was Man Ray, who made hundreds of portraits of her.

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