Musée Rodin Paris Reviews
Superb museum Jun 30, 2013
Musée Rodin is a superb museum located in Paris, in the 7th arrondissement close to the Place des Invalides. The museum is located in the Hotel Biron, an 18th century castle like town house.
It was in 1988, when the film "Camille Claudel" came out, that my interest for August Rodin was awakened. A visit to the museum was therefore a must for me. The museum was founded in 1916 and opened in 1919. It holds the largest Rodin collection, with more than 6000 sculptures (terracotta, plaster, bronze, marble, wax, molten glass, stoneware) and 7000 works on paper.
The museum consists of three parts, the garden, Hotel Biron and the temporary exhibition hall. At the moment there is an exhibition called “The Flesh, The Marble”. Surprisingly, most of this work is neither signed nor dated.
We started our visit inside the beautiful Palace, where we admired sculptures by both August Rodin and Camille Claudel. They were both fantastic artists. Camille Claudel was his student and she inspired his work. Through the years there have been many speculations around the question “are some of his sculptures really made by her?”. I guess we will never learn the answer. The sculptures, drawings and paintings are all very nicely presented in large and light rooms. One of the highlights is “The Kiss”, an 1889 marble sculpture. The consequent eroticism in the sculpture made it controversial and the sculpture was considered unsuitable for general display at the time it was made.
The garden is not to be missed. A large number of sculptures are presented there. The best time to visit the beautiful garden is no doubt on a sunny spring or summer day. The garden has a classic layout with lawn, ponds and rows of lindens. The rose garden is to the north and a beautiful place to admire his work. The famous “The Thinker” is placed in the garden.
François-Auguste-René Rodin was born in Paris in 1840. He started drawing at the age of 10 and by 14 he studied drawing and painting. He made a sculpture, which was rejected at the Grand École. This was a great disappointment and he found work as a craftsman and an ornamenter, before he briefly joined a Catholic order. Due to his lack of suitability for the order, he went back to sculpturing. During the Franco-Prussian war he joined the National Gard. After 6 years in Belgium he returned to Paris in 1877 and in 1880 he got work at a porcelain factory. He soon stopped working there when he won a commission to create a portal for a planned museum of decorative art. The museum was never build, but with the commission came a studio, which gave him artistic freedom. From then on his income came from private commissions.
In 1883 Rodin supervised a course and that was where he met Camille Claudel and a passionate, but stormy relation was formed. She was a talented sculptor and assisted him on commissions. By 1900 August Rodin was a world renowned artist, a man who never was accepted into Paris´ foremost schools.
August Rodin had lived in Meudon, but moved back to Paris in 1908, where he rented the main floor of the Hotel Biron, which later was to become his museum. He died in Meudon, Ile-de-France 5 days after his 77th birthday, two years before the Musée Rodin was opened. In return for a state-owned flat and studio, Rodin left his work to the nation.
I can highly recommend a visit to the Musée Rodin. Of Paris' museums for a single artist, this is the best and most complete one. The Hotel Biron with its collection is superb, but don´t forget to visit the garden too. When you walk around, keep your ticket in handy, you will be asked to show it every time you enter a new part of the museum. Until 2015 restoration work will be going on, which means that you will not be able to see the complete collection at all times.
Opening hours: Tuesday – Sunday: 10 am – 5:45 pm
Admission: adults €9, family €10, EU citizens 18-25 free, non EU citizens 18-25 €5, garden only €1
Audio guides are available in 5 languages (French, English, German, Spanish and Portuguese) for €6.
How to get there:1. Métro (line 13) : Varenne or Invalides 2. R.E.R (line C) : Invalides 3. Bus : 69, 82, 87, 92
2 / 2 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
Join TravBuddy to leave comments, meet new friends and share travel tips!