Patrick Modiano, 1945, Year won 2014, An archeologist of memories.
When memories die out and buried in the soil of forgetfulness – there comes Patrick Modiano from the darkness, a shovel and a lantern in his hands, and rescues them from the abyss of death.
Jewish-French author Patrick Modiano, winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2014 is referred to as “the archeologist of memories”. His entire corpus of works is about the desperate attempt to try and capture particles of memory, elusive fractions – and bring them alive again.
A restless, strict archivist, Patrick Modiano picks, sorts and organizes his memories. Names of streets, quarters, alleys and anonymous by passers – are the very foundation of Modiano’s art.
He was born in Paris, on November 30 1945. His father was a questionable businessman who walked out on him when he was 5 years old. His mother, “a pretty dreamy woman” as he described her, was unable to raise him and sent him to boarding schools.
When he studies in Henri–IV in Paris, his mother hired the author and matematician Raymond Queneau, who was a friend of hers, as Patrick’s tutor. Queneau encouraged the boy’s literary aspirations and had his first manuscript, La Place de l’étoile, published in 1968.
The detailed review of the city of Paris is an inherent characteristic of each and every one of Modiano’s 30 books, like a tour guide reporting on a city’s curiosities. However in a much deeper level, these specifics alows an illusion of certainty, a grasp onto a concreted reality that helps the author cope with alienation and the pursue of identity.
His stories change their genre constantly: detective fiction, romantic Paris, thriller, and in some cases extremely accurate descriptions, such as the shape of the siluette of the woman wearing a blue dress at a specific angle the sun shines through the windows of the LA CONDA CAFÉ.