Rodin: Genius of Form
1 September 2006 - 18 February 2007
Rodin: Genius of form provides a unique opportunity for visitors to experience the dramatic intensity, physicality and immediacy of Auguste Rodin’s celebrated bronze sculptures. Through the powerful emotive effect of his work, visitors will identify with why Rodin is considered the greatest sculptor of the modern era.
Auguste Rodin, France, 1840 - 1917, The three shades, 1880 (cast 1973), Paris, bronze, 96.0 x 93.0 x 55.0 cm; William Bowmore AO OBE Collection. Gift of the South Australian Government, assisted by the Art Gallery of South Australia Foundation 1996.
Rodin (1840-1917) revolutionised the concept of sculpture in the
latter nineteenth century. He introduced an expressiveness and vitality to his sculpture through an
imperfection of form and finish, which was in stark contrast to the prevailing academic
conventions. The textured surface of his sculptures, the interplay of light and the apparently
spontaneous manner in which they are worked, as in
Study for the walking man, 1878, are comparative to the
painting techniques used by the Impressionists. Rodin’s approach to creating sculpture was also
personal and intensely expressive, and partially inspired by the spirit of Romanticism. He created
a new sculptural aesthetic and technique in order capture the essence of human form, emotion and
This exhibition showcases the Gallery’s collection of twenty Rodin sculptures, which is the largest group of Rodin sculptures outside France, Japan and the United States. The collection is displayed together for the first time since they were acquired ten years ago through the generous patronage of William Bowmore AO OBE, with the assistance of the Art Gallery of South Australia Foundation and the Government of South Australia. The exhibition also provides a rare opportunity to see an example of Rodin’s most renowned work, The Thinker, from a private collection.
Rodin: Genius of Form is curated by Jane Messenger, the Art Gallery of South Australia’s Associate Curator of European Art.