Trip 4: FRANCE HOLIDAY in May 2007 ….. Rodin Museum = Post 3


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Auguste Rodin

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

François Auguste René Rodin (12 November 1840 – 17 November 1917) was a French sculptor.[1] Although Rodin is generally considered the progenitor of modern sculpture,[2] he did not set out to rebel against the past. He was schooled traditionally, took a craftsman-like approach to his work, and desired academic recognition,[3] although he was never accepted into Paris’s foremost school of art.

Rodin possessed a unique ability to model a complex, turbulent, deeply pocketed surface in clay. Many of his most notable sculptures were criticized during his lifetime. They clashed with predominant figurative sculpture traditions, in which works were decorative, formulaic, or highly thematic. Rodin’s most original work departed from traditional themes of mythology and allegory, modeled the human body with naturalism, and celebrated individual character and physicality. Rodin was sensitive to the controversy surrounding his work, but refused to change his style. Successive works brought increasing favor from the government and the artistic community.

From the unexpected naturalism of his first major figure – inspired by his 1875 trip to Italy – to the unconventional memorials whose commissions he later sought, Rodin’s reputation grew, and he became the preeminent French sculptor of his time. By 1900, he was a world-renowned artist. Wealthy private clients sought Rodin’s work after his World’s Fair exhibit, and he kept company with a variety of high-profile intellectuals and artists. His students included Antoine Bourdelle, Camille Claudel, Constantin Brâncuși, and Charles Despiau. He married his lifelong companion, Rose Beuret, in the last year of both their lives. His sculptures suffered a decline in popularity after his death in 1917, but within a few decades, his legacy solidified. Rodin remains one of the few sculptors widely known outside the visual arts community.


About the Museum

The Musée Rodin (The Rodin Museum) is located in an eighteenth century mansion where the artist once lived and worked, tucked behind a walled garden away from the hubbub of the city. The building is located next to the Invalides,

the location of the tomb of Napoleon Bonaparte. The mansion was originally built for a Paris wigmaker but also belonged to the Catholic church and, eventually, the city of Paris.


…. The Rodin Museum Houses Sculptures by Auguste Rodin (1840-1917) the French artist …….. see the websites:

The Museum  Building …..
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The museum contains some of Rodin’s greatest figures — “The Burghers of Calais,” “Adam,” “Eve,” “St. John the Baptist Preaching,” busts and figures of Balzac, and busts of Gustav Mahler, George Bernard Shaw, Victor Hugo, Georges Clemenceau, Pope Benedict XV, and Puvis de Chavannes. Sketches, drawings, books, and papers of Rodin’s are on deposit as well as plaster casts and a fine series of mood photographs of Rodin at Meudon by Edward Steichen. The plaster of “Eternal Springtime” is the original Rodin sculpture which the artist presented to Robert Louis Stevenson in 1885.
Inside The Museum …..
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 …… Timber flooring on the floor of the museum …..
Rodin’s Sculptures within the Museum …..
….. The Kiss 1886 …….
Rodin’s Sculptures Outside in the Park  …..
….. The Formal Upper Garden Around the Museum …..   with various Rodin Sculptures …
….. Rodin’s piece of sculpture ‘The Thinker’ ……
Later in his life Rodin said of it, “Nothing which I made satisfied me as much, because nothing had cost me as much, nothing else sums up so profoundly that which I believe to be the secret law of my art.”
The Gates of Hell is a monumental sculptural group work by French artist Auguste Rodin that depicts a scene from the Inferno, the first section of Dante Alighieri’s Divine Comedy. It stands at 6 meters high, 4 meters wide and 1 meter deep and contains 180 figures. Wikipedia
The Three Shades …. see the top of the sculpture ….
The Three Shades is a sculptural group produced in plaster by Auguste Rodin in 1886 for his The Gates of Hell. He made several individual studies for the Shades before finally deciding to put them together as three identical figures gathered around a central point. Wikipedia
Rodin, Auguste …. from the website:
How Rodin Achieved Unity and Drama …. Rodin gives St-Pierre determination and poise. He holds the key to the city, and around his neck is the rope, or halter, prescribed by the conquerors. A companion, with his head buried in his hands, is on the right. These two men exemplify the greatest contrast of feeling in the group. By placing them together Rodin achieves dramatic power. Observe too that this use of contrasting emotion is also strongly evident in the central group and to a lesser extent even in the two figures on the left.

To organize, or compose, six different figures into a single unified work of art, Rodin groups them into three pairs, each pair differing from the other and yet tied to the others in rhythmic movement. The spaces between the figures are also varied. This is what sculpture tries to achieve, for sculpture deals essentially with the purposeful relationships of volumes in space. By looking at the details we see Rodin’s ability to convey feeling through facial expression and through hands. He cuts the hollows of the face deeply to assure strong shadows, and his textured surfaces catch the subtle variations of light and heighten the sense of life and movement. This irregular surface is a departure from the cold, impersonal smoothness of the classical tradition. Together with a profound sense of power and drama, it had a tremendous influence on the sculptors of Rodin’s time and helped to determine the trend of modern sculpture.

Rodin, Auguste (1840-1917). The French artist Auguste Rodin had a profound influence on 20th-century sculpture. His works are distinguished by their stunning strength and realism. Rodin refused to ignore the negative aspects of humanity, and his works confront distress and moral weakness as well as passion and beauty.

Francois-Auguste-Rene Rodin was born on Nov. 12, 1840, in Paris. At the age of 14 he entered the Petite Ecole, a school of decorative arts in Paris. He applied three times to study at the renowned Ecole des Beaux-Arts but was rejected each time. In 1858 he began to do decorative stonework in order to make his living. Four years later the death of his sister Marie so traumatized Rodin that he entered a sacred order.
The father superior of the order recognized Rodin’s talents and encouraged him to pursue his art.

In 1864 Rodin met a seamstress named Rose Beuret. She became his life companion and was the model for many of his works. That year Rodin submitted his Man with a Broken Nose to the Paris Salon. It was rejected but later accepted under the title Portrait of a Roman. Rodin traveled in 1875 to Italy, where the works of Michelangelo made a strong impression on him. The trip inspired his sculpture The Age of Bronze, which was exhibited at the Paris Salon in 1877. It caused a scandal because the critics could not believe that Rodin had not used a casting of a live model in creating so realistic a work.

The controversy brought Rodin more fame than praise might have. In 1880 he was commissioned to create a bronze door for the future Museum of Decorative Arts. Although the work was unfinished at the time of his death, it provided the basis for some of Rodin’s most influential and powerful work. In 1884 he was commissioned to create a monument that became The Burghers of Calais. His statues St. John the Baptist Preaching, Eve, The Age of Bronze, and The Thinker are world-famous. Rodin died on Nov. 17, 1917, and was buried at Meudon.

When Rodin was 76 years old he gave the French government the entire collection of his own works and other art objects he had acquired. They occupy the Hotel Biron in Paris as the Musee Rodin and are still placed as Rodin set them.


….. The Actual Museum Housing Sculptures by Auguste Rodin (1840-1917) the French artist ….. The Musee Rodin Museum. The Hôtel Biron houses the Auguste Rodin museum and stands below the dome of the Invalides in the Faubourg Saint-Germain area of Paris, France. The house itself was built around 1728 by the architect Jean Aubert for Abraham Peyrenc de Moras, a wig maker who made his fortune speculating with paper money, and it is more like a chateau than a typical house with its grounds stretching for about seven acres.
The house was notable for its magnificence with beautiful facades and the refinement of the interior decoration with carved paneling for the rooms overlooking the grounds. But unfortunately, Peyrenc de Moras did not live there long as he died in 1732 and his wife rented out the property until her death, to the Duchesse du Maine, who was Louis XIV’s daughter-in-law.

World Art on the Internet through Artsy:

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Auguste Rodin: The Centenary Installation

Marking the centenary of Auguste Rodin’s death in 1917, the Legion of Honor’s Rodin holdings will be presented in a new context. Interpretations from artists Urs Fischer, Sarah Lucas, and Gustav Klimt will be presented in the Rodin Dialogues throughout the year.

Artsy is redefining the way the world discovers art. Our mission is to make all the world’s art accessible to anyone with an Internet connection. Reaching that goal starts with our people. We dedicate an extraordinary amount of time and energy to finding world-class talent to join the Artsy Team. Want to join us? We’d love to hear from you.

See these websites:

From  the British Museum website above, see ”Rodin: Body in Bronze” at the Brooklyn Museum:


…… The Woodland outside the Museum …..

On the left (east) side of the lawn is a small forest of linden trees. Here, in the shade, are many bronze sculptures, including “Adam”, “Eve”, “Meditation”, “The Spirit of Eternal Rest”, “Orpheus”, “The Whistler Muse”, “The Three Shades”, “The Two Caryatids” and “The Monument to the Burghers of Calais”.

There are also sculptures in the garden that Rodin had purchased, such as a headless Hercules from the Roman era. There are torsos of men and women, either from the Roman times or modern copies of Greek originals. They are placed in naturalized settings. “Nature and antiquity are the two great sources of life for an artist.” -Rodin

A wide path leads from the nearby woodland into a man-made closed, intimate park around the Museum  ….
….. circular path in the formal garden …..
…… Most of the Garden of the Rodin Museum is behind the building. The steps leading down from the terrace at the back of the Hôtel opens on to a long expanse of green lawn. Paths along the sides lead to a large ornamental pool beyond.
Looking back to the Museum  ….
……. The pool with aquatic plants …..
….. Daffodils in flower  ….
…… Harriet walking along the pathway into the formal lower garden
….. the Tea Shop out in the garden …….
…. Chairs and tables out from the Tea Shop  …..
Harriet sitting on a seat in the lower formal garden  ………

See the next Post:

Trip 4: FRANCE HOLIDAY in May 2007 ….. MONT-SAINT-MICHEL and its Bay + Photos …. Post 4

This post is hyperlinked even though it doesn’t look hyperlinked.