Art Talk: Auguste Rodin

Occasionally for the Art Talk blog I will highlight a specific artist. Today we will learn a bit more about Auguste Rodin.

9 facts about Rodin
Things I found interesting as I read Naked Came I by David Weiss.

1. He was born in Paris, France on November 12, 1840

2. He had poor eyesight
I can totally relate.

3. He had red hair
I like this since I am also a red head.

4. He spent almost a year in a monastery
He was very close to his sister Marie and she helped him get into Petite Ecole and paid his tuition. There he learned how to draw and paint and was introduced to sculpture by Lecoq. After Marie died he decided to take her place in the church at the monastery of the Fathers of the Holy Sacrament. He lasted there almost a year and was encouraged leave and to continue with sculpture.

5. He was in a relationship with Rose for 53 years
He met a seamstress named Rose in 1864. He approached her because he wanted to model her. They had a son together and she was very devoted to him her whole life. He married her in 1917, the same year he died.

6. Early in his career he worked as an ornament maker to help pay for models.

7. He was friends with the impressionist painters
He spent a lot to Gafe Guerbois with artists including Fantin-Latour, Edgar Degas, Manet, Renoir. In 1889 he did a joint exhibition with Claude Monet.

8. He had a passionate love affair with Camille Claudel
She was his assistant, model and partner for 15 years. She is the model for The Kiss (see picture below).

9. He worked on the Gates of Hell for 37 years
The Gates of Hell (see picture below) was commissioned for the Direcorate of Fine Arts. He based it on Dante's Inferno.

The 9 Rodin sculptures I have seen are listed in chronological order below.

Walking man, 1877-1878
Eve, 1880
Adam, 1880-1881
Crouching Woman, 1880-1882
The Kiss, 1882
Burghers of Calais, 1884-1895
Balzac, 1892-1897
The Thinker, 1903
Gates of Hell, 1880-1917

Monument to Balzac, August Rodin, 1892-1897
The French playwright and novelist Honore de Balzac

Walking Man, Auguste Rodin, 1877-1878
A study in dynamic pose.

Gates of Hell, Auguste Rodin, 1880-1917
The sculpture that took him the longest to complete at 37 years.

The Thinker, Auguste Rodin, 1903
Originally part of the Gates of Hell and represented the Poet Dante

Adam, Auguste Rodin, 1880-1881

Eve, Auguste Rodin, 1881

Adam and Eve were originally designed to flank the Gates of Hell

Burghers of Calais, Auguste Rodin, 1884-1895
An in depth post on the The Burghers of Calais

Crouching Woman, Auguste Rodin, 1880-1882

Modeled after his sister Clotilde

The Kiss, Auguste Rodin, 1882

1 Naked Came I by David Weiss
2 Wikipedia: Auguste Rodin

Art Talk Series Highlights
Art Talk: Introduction has a link to all Art Talk posts
Art Talk: Emotion In Bronze
Art Talk: Moore in America
Art Talk: Art Tells Our Story
Art Talk: The Burghers of Calais

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