The painter, Peter Wihl, is about to turn fifty and open a new, big exhibition. The gallery owner, Ben, warns him: "To be honest, you can't afford to repeat yourself any more. Evil tongues say that if you're going to paint more body parts, you'll soon have to start with the internal organs."
Peter lives with his wife, Helene, a set designer who is working on a production of Ibsen's play The Wild Duck. They have a six-year old daughter, Kaia. As he struggles with his paintings for the exhibition, he realises that he is starting to lose his sight. Peter enters into a pact with the devil, in the shape of an old school friend. The novel poses the question: how far is Peter willing to go in order to create his art? And what is most important, art or people?
Modellen (The Model) is a brilliant, ruthless portrayal of an artist's self-obsession and desperation – and it marks and important step in the development of Lars Saabye Christensen's authorship.
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