Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Rodin in Brooklyn

In keeping withe the theme of "old friends" at other institutions, today I'll share something I came across in the lobby at the Brooklyn Museum. After admiring the finished piece in the Petrie Court at the Met and also at the Rodin Museum in Paris, I was particularly excited to see four sculptures comprising a study for Rodin's The Burghers of Calais!

The figures are a "rough draft," if you will - a study of nudes that were then draped in wet canvas for clothing before the final mold was cast - a glimpse at the artist's process, which I just love.

French sculptor, Auguste Rodin might be the most prolific sculptor in history - at least I've seen more Rodins than anything else when it comes to sculpture. And I'm not complaining! I LOVE his work. That man captured more emotion in bronze and marble than any painter I've come across.



  1. A lot of Rodin's sculpture are posthumous works, which means they were done from the same molds after his death. The seemingly overwhelming quantity is not because of the artist's diligence, but because of the greed of the related companies.

    In fact, Rodin required to bring the works done from the foundry and rework on the piece in his life time. Therefore, I would hesitate to call the works at the Brooklyn Museum truly authentic.

    Years ago, Brooklyn Museum had the Schenck House at the entrance, a wonderful piece of Brooklyn's history. Then they put Rodin there, in a eerie way since it is known that the museum is selling off their European collection.

    Not that I do not love Rodin, I just think there are other things that are better to show at the entrance, both historically and aesthetically.


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