'The discarded doors became a creative reservoir for Rodin, providing many groups of figures which were finally detached from the whole, such as The Thinker and The Kiss. The Gates of Hell, which only a few privileged critics had been allowed to see, then took on symbolic value: of Rodin's boundless creative genius for some, of his inability to finish anything, for others.'
The Gates of Hell by Auguste RodinMusée d’Orsay, Paris
'L'Age d'airain (The Bronze Age) is a life-size bronze piece that Rodin had begun in October, 1875 and continued before the trip he made to Italy. In Florence he was impressed by Michelangelo's work, which he studied intensely.'
L´Age d´airain / The Bronze Age by Auguste RodinColección de Arte Amalia Lacroze de Fortabat
'The Thinker was initially created as a figure for placement on Rodin's The Gates of Hell, then cast for collectors at the beginning of the 1890s.'
The Thinker by Auguste RodinMaryhill Museum of Art
'His Belgian sculptor friends rallied round and Gustave Biot wrote, "I find it strange that a certificate such as you have asked me to provide could be needed in Paris, but it is a pleasure and duty for me to give it to you."Despite the appointment of a Director of Fine Arts, Edmund Turquet, who was more sympathetic to Rodin, the inspection committee, sent in February 1880, refused to allow this model to be cast in bronze. So a number of well-known sculptors then stepped in--Dubois, Falguière, Carrier-Belleuse, Chapu, Chaplain, Thomas, Delaplanche--insisting that the sculptor's skill in improvising from memory, "his energy and extraordinarily powerful modelling" proved that he had executed The Bronze Age without cheating.'
The Bronze Age by Auguste RodinMusée d’Orsay, Paris
'He was not satisfied with this work, however, as it was too exact a copy of Michelangelo's sculpture, and in the end he destroyed it. When he began formulating his ideas for The Gates of Hell, Rodin decided to place monumental figures on either side of the gates.'
Adam by Auguste RodinThe National Museum of Western Art, Tokyo
'Here, in order to make the two sculptures into one Rodin changed the pose into that of a supportive figure by grounding the Fallen Man's right foot as it stretches back to jump in order to bear the weight of the woman, and changed the right hand of The Crouching Woman that grasps her left ankle into a natural forward position.'
I am Beautiful by Auguste RodinThe National Museum of Western Art, Tokyo
'Jean de Fiennes is one of six figures that comprise Rodin's monumental The Burghers of Calais.'
Jean de Fiennes by Auguste RodinMaryhill Museum of Art
'Rodin studied at the Ecole Imp_riale Sp_ciale de Dessin et de Math_matiques (which later became the Ecole Nationale sup_rieure des Arts D_coratifs). In 1875, he traveled to Italy, where he was inspired by the great artworks by Michelangelo and others.'
Head of Eustache de Saint-Pierre by Auguste RODINThe Museum of Modern Art, Saitama
'Rodin made the following comment about The Thinker.'
The Thinker (Enlarged) by Auguste RodinThe National Museum of Western Art, Tokyo
'Rodin's The Kiss was intended as an element for The Gates of Hell, a massive set of doors whose quarters are adorned with figures from The Divine Comedy.'
The Kiss by Auguste RodinThe National Museum in Warsaw
'This type of memorial figure differed from all previous portrait figures, wrapped in a formal cape as he stands before his adoring public, and Rodin's portrait of Balzac was never understood during the artist's lifetime.'
Balzac (Last Study) by Auguste RodinThe National Museum of Western Art, Tokyo