As the world celebrates a centennial of Auguste Rodin death this year, its a good occasion for a visit to Rodin Museum in Philadelphia. The museum opened in 1929, has more than 140 pieces covering all stages of artist’s oeuvre.
Walking through the formal French garden where 8 sculptures are installed including The Thinker, The Burghers of Calais and The Gates of Hell, the visitors enter an elegant Beaux-Arts building. Inside the airy main hall and the more intimate side rooms, you will have a chance to see the famous sculptures up close and find insightful details about each piece of work with historical parallels and the stories that served as inspiration for the works.
If you are so moved by seeing the sculptures and want to sketch them for better understanding of artist’s vision, there are sketch albums and pencils on hand in every room. Follow your heart and draw what you see – after all the art is only alive when it moves us. The museum also offers a very well designed family guide to sharpen young eyes and encourage them to see the artist’s shapes.
Read the notes, observe the sculptures, try to sketch and follow the lines to fully appreciate the artist’s ideas and the forms.
The custom of preserving the bodies of dead humans and animals was practiced by people from ancient times. The most well-preserved objects are usually found in dry and hot climates where nature provides the most suitable environment for the mummification. Due to their geography both Egypt and Peru had very elaborate embalming traditions and associated religious rituals. The exhibition at the American Museum of Natural History brings on view the mummies from these two countries located on opposite sides of the globe.
While many think that the oldest mummies came from Egypt, its actually Peru where the oldest mummies were found. The ancient people living in hot and dry areas of nowadays Peru, started making mummies 7,000 years ago. While Egypt’s mummies are better known, its oldest is 3,500 years old.
The show at the American Museum of Natural History comes from the Fields museum in Chicago. Some of the objects on view were not exhibited from 1893 when the World’s Columbian Exposition took place in Chicago.
Current exhibition goes into history, techniques and practices of mummifications with many interactive tables to learn and explore. Even a CT scanner is prominently on view as its a staple of modern exploration of the artifacts. The New York Times review explores various method used by archeologists to glean inside and reconstruct the objects and how they lived.
The Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco is mounting an exhibition Klimt & Rodin: An Artistic Encounter which will be on view in October 14, 2017 – January 28, 2018 to celebrate the centenaries of the grand masters. The show which will be held at the Legion of Honor is marking the first time the works of Klimt will be shown on the West Coast. The Legion of Honor had celebrated Rodin centenary with an installation which had officially ended in April of this year but the works had remained in place and will be jointed by the works of Klimt for an artistic dialog between the masters on their beloved and deeply explored topic of love, beauty and eroticism.
Auguste Rodin had only one in person meeting with Gustav Klimt when he traveled to Prague via Vienna in 1902. Rodin had accepted an invitation to visit an exhibition of Vienna Secession movement Beethoven Frieze by Klimt. The story of the encounter, as described by The Telegraph art critic, has a confession by Rodin that he had “never before experienced such an atmosphere – your tragic and magnificent Beethoven fresco, your unforgettable, temple-like exhibition, and now this garden, these women, this music.” In the words of art historian Berta Zuckerkandl, Klimt suggested that the reason for all of that is in one word: Austria. That insight had clearly worked for the Modernists and their circle in Vienna. The interplay between art, music and the beauties will be the main object of the exhibition in San Francisco.
If you are not planning to travel to San Francisco, you can still see all major works by Rodin at Rodin Museum in Philadelphia, PA . As for Klimt, Neue Galeriewould be your fist stop to see modernists’ masterworks including Klimt’s. The Met has 2 paintings at Gallery 829and several drawings which are not currently on view. There are also 2 paintings and several drawings at MoMAavailable to view online.
Venue: Legion of Honors, San Francisco, CA Time: October 14, 2017 – January 28, 2018