Rodin: Portraits of a Lifetime / Selections from the Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Collections
October 13 – December 17, 2016
J. Wayne Stark Galleries
During the course of his career, Rodin employed many mediums and techniques, but he is best known for his bronze sculptures, of which thousands were produced in his lifetime. Rodin is often lauded as the father of modern sculpture, and some of his most well-known portraits are included in the exhibition, like the Heroic Bust of Victor Hugo, Mask of the Man with the Broken Nose, and The Creator, which is considered by many to be a self-portrait.
The selected works featured in Rodin: Portraits of a Lifetime demonstrate Rodin’s deep appreciation for the natural form of the human figure. From his first major sculpture, Rodin’s work was marked by realism, which set him apart from the traditional idealized academic art of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Rodin captured the expressiveness and authentic emotion of his subjects in part by using roughly textured bronze surfaces to reflect light, giving the effect of movement. His works were both praised and criticized during his lifetime. Today he is credited with transforming sculpture into a modern art form and he remains one of the most influential artists of all time.
Rodin: Portraits of a Lifetime highlights Rodin’s use of the bronze casting process. This is a complex technique in which multiple originals are made from the sculptor’s first conception in plaster or clay. These bronze casts accurately reflect the delicate nuances of the model.
Image (detail): Auguste Rodin, Claude Lorraine, 1889, bronze. Lent by Iris Cantor.