“Modigliani (Lost In Your Eyes)” is the fourth single released by the American synthpop band Book of Love. The song was included on the band’s eponymous debut album Book of Love in 1986. The B-side to the single is a remixed version of “Modigliani” by Omar Santana, titled “Mo’dub’iani”.
“Modigliani (Lost In Your Eyes)”, was released as a single in early 1987, making it the fourth and final single release from their debut album. The song was a dance club hit, peaking at no. 17 on the Billboard Hot Dance Club Play chart, becoming as popular as New Order and Depeche Mode singles in clubs at its peak. “Modigliani (Lost in Your Eyes)” is an ode to Italian painter Amedeo Modigliani. The track was penned by Jade Lee, Susan Ottaviano, and Ted Ottaviano (not related despite having the same last name), who had all been art school students and were inspired by the Italian painter’s paintings and history.
“Amedeo Modigliani had always been the band’s own version of a rock star. After all, we were all art school students. At the time I was working on the [Requiem Mass] remix I became submerged and almost obsessed in his life story. It read like a Bronte sisters novel. I wrote a short biography for the front cover of the 12 inch.” -Ted Ottaviano on Modigliani, 2008.
The cover of the single featured one of Modigliani’s famous paintings of his mistress Jeanne Hébuterne, along with Ted’s short bio: “Born in Livorno Italy on July 12, 1884, Amedeo Modigliani received little recognition for his paintings and sculpture during his lifetime. He had only a single one-man show, which instead of success brought scandal because of several nude paintings. He died of Tuberculosis at the age of 36. The day after his death, his mistress Jeanne Hébuterne, pregnant with his child, leaped from a fifth story window, killing both herself and the child. Within two years ironically, Modigliani’s work began to be recognized and his reputation was soon established.” For the back sleeve of the 12 inch single, Susan Ottaviano made drawings of each member of the band in the style of Modigliani. Similar, yet alternate large portrait drawings of the band were later used as large stage props behind the band on their Lullaby Tour in 1989.
The last line of lyrics in the song are in Italian, “Amedeo Amedeo, gli occhi tuoi, mi anno fatto innamorare” roughly translates to “Amadeo Amadeo, I fell in love with you when I saw your eyes.”
The four-minute ‘Requiem Mass’ remixed version of “Modigliani (Lost in Your Eyes)” was featured in an episode of Miami Vice on November 6, 1987, and both the original single and ‘Requiem Mass’ remix were used in the 1987 film Planes, Trains and Automobiles.
Side A: “Modigliani (Lost In Your Eyes)” – 3:53
Side B: “Mo’dub’iani” – 5:09
Written by Jade Lee, Susan Ottaviano, and Theodore Ottaviano. All instruments arranged, programmed, and performed by Book of Love.
MUSIC IN FOUR ACTS
” * ” denotes that version is available as digital download