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SUArt Galleries Presents ‘Rodin: The Human Experience/Selections from the Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Collections’
The Syracuse University Art Galleries is presenting “Rodin: The Human Experience/Selections from the Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Collections,” on view beginning Aug. 16 and continuing through Nov. 18 in the Shaffer Art Building.
Organized by Judith Sobol, curator of collections and exhibitions at the Iris & B. Gerald Cantor Foundation, this monumental exhibition features 28 bronze works by the French artist who, at the peak of his career, was regarded as the greatest sculptor since Michelangelo.
Rejecting 19th-century academic traditions that dictated what was “proper” in art, Auguste Rodin used sculpture made from hard marble and bronze to convey the vitality of the human spirit. His vigorous modeling emphasized his personal response to the subject, and he conveyed movement and emotion by inventing new poses and gestures.
“By bringing an exhibition of this caliber to campus, we hope to invite research, investigation and appreciation from across the campus,” says Jeffrey Hoone, executive director of the Coalition of Museum and Art Centers (CMAC). “From philosophers to physicists and sculptors to sports enthusiasts, Rodin speaks to many aspects of the human condition and human potential. Our goal is that his work will resonate throughout the campus during this very special exhibition.”
Gallery hours are Tuesday through Wednesday and Friday through Sunday from 11 a.m.-4:30 p.m., and Thursdays from 11 a.m.–8 p.m. The gallery is closed on Mondays and University holidays. The SUArt Galleries will host a gallery reception from 5–7 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 6. Patrons are welcome to view the exhibition until the gallery closes at 8 p.m. The reception is free and open to the public.
“Rodin: The Human Experience/Selections from the Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Collections” presents 28 figures in bronze by Auguste Rodin (1840-1917), the French sculptor who left behind 19th-century academic traditions to focus on conveying the passion and vitality of the human spirit. Also included in the exhibition are three depictions of the artist by his artist friends, including Edward Steichen. Rodin exerted a tremendous influence on artists of subsequent generations, such as Matisse, Brancusi and Maillol. His vigorous modeling emphasized his personal response to the subject, and he captured movement and emotion by altering traditional poses and gestures.
The bronzes on view are especially rich in portraiture. Included are Rodin’s renowned depictions of the writers Victor Hugo and Honoré de Balzac; the composer Gustav Mahler; the artist Claude Lorrain; and “The Creator,” which is likely a self-portrait. Also included in the exhibition is Jean de Fiennes, one of six figures that comprise Auguste Rodin’s monumental “The Burghers of Calais.”
Rodin’s deft skill in using the bronze-casting technique to represent living flesh and his interest in expressing extreme psychological states were highly influential upon younger artists, both in Europe and America. The exhibition reveals why the artist is considered the crucial link between traditional and modern sculpture.
This exhibition was organized by the Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Foundation, which promotes and recognizes excellence in the arts and enhances cultural life internationally through its support for art exhibitions and scholarship and for the endowment of galleries and sculpture gardens at major museums. Most unusual for a philanthropic foundation, the Cantor Foundation also owns this significant collection of Rodin sculpture. During the last four decades, it has loaned individual works and entire exhibitions to museums in more than 160 cities in Australia, Canada, Japan, Singapore and the United States. Nearly 11 million people have seen these shows.
Thursday, Sept. 6, 5–7 p.m.
Join the SUArt Galleries to celebrate the opening of the newly installed exhibition “Rodin: The Human Experience,” on view in the galleries Aug. 16 through Nov. 18.
Art Conservation On Display
Wednesday, Sept. 12, 11 a.m.–4:30 p.m.
Come to the gallery to view art conservators at work. A team of conservators from the Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Foundation will be examining, documenting, cleaning, inpainting, waxing and preparing the sculptures for the fall exhibition, “Rodin: The Human Experience.”
Wednesday, Sept. 5, 12:15 p.m.
Join art history assistant professor Romita Ray for a gallery tour of “Rodin: The Human Experience.”
Wednesday, Oct. 10, 12:15 p.m.
Explore Auguste Rodin and his connections to the SUArt Collection with associate director/ curator David Prince through artwork installed on campus. Examine several sculptures by noted students of Rodin, including Ivan Meštrović, whom Rodin once called “the greatest phenomenon amongst sculptors.”
All events are free and open to the public. Visit suart.syr.edu for more information on parking and directions to the galleries.