Musee Rodin, Paris
After my last post on Musee d’Orsay, it seemed only natural to talk about Musee Rodin, Auguste Rodin’s sculpture garden and museum, a short walk from Musee d’Orsay and in the shadow of Les Invalides (a subject for another post!). Here is home to the original “Le Penseur” (The Thinker), known by school kids around the world (why is that?). I consider it a must-see when in Paris, for the sculpture, the garden, and just generally, the peacefulness one gets while still in the heart of a big city. Must be something about the walled-in space that cuts out the extraneous and allows an inner peace to emerge. I thought I had more photos than I apparently do, at least in digital format, so I will be looking through some old photographs to scan and add to this. However, I have also recently come upon a Facebook page for Musee Rodin containing a variety of posted photos of the garden, his sculpture (including inside the museum), and exhibitions.
The image above was taken in October 2009, and one can tell it is getting a bit later in the year as the tree in front of the hidden dome is starting to turn a little yellow. And, in the image below, as I pose in front of this most popular sculpture, note that I’m wearing a jacket, scarf, and gloves – it was a clear, crisp, and chilly morning in Paris…
The museum is actually the grounds and building of the Hotel Biron, built 1728-30, at 77 rue de Varenne. The building and grounds at the time were the toast of Paris, but subsequently fell on hard times. It was not until 1908 that Rodin took up residence there. In 1911, the State bought the property and in 1916 agreed to house all of Rodin’s works. The museum opened in 1919, but unfortunately, Rodin had since passed away (in 1917). I will have to see if I can dig out photos of The Gates of Hell, The Burghers of Calais, and Balzac and post them here. Until then, here are a few images of the garden, with a view back toward the chateau.
I will end this little sojourn into artistic Paris with the image below. On the left is the Hotel Biron (the museum), the dome of Les Invalides, the top of Tour Eiffel, the museum shop (on the right), and in the middle background, Le Penseur. Visit this place if you are ever in Paris.