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Auguste Rodin (French, 1840-1917)


Also known as:  Rodin, François-Auguste-René; Francois A. Rene Rodin

Birth Place: Paris (Ville de Paris department, île-de-France, France)

Auguste Rodin began to draw as a child before progressing to studying art at Petite Ecole. While in school, Rodin met other artists and teachers who affected his understanding of creating unique art. He was born in 1840 to John-Baptiste and Marie Rodin in France. By the early 1860s, Rodin entered a religious order while giving up art studies for several years.

Eventually, Rodin left the religious order and began to work as a decorator to pay his expenses. During this time, he focused his artistic attentions on sculpture while displaying pieces at exhibitions. After serving as a soldier in the Franco-Prussian war, Rodin traveled to Belgium to work for Albert-Ernest Carrier-Belleuse as an assistant designing architecture.

In 1877, Rodin returned to Paris, France with his wife Rose Beuret. Rodin had difficulty finding work because of accusations of faking an important sculpture “The Age of Bronze” while in Belgium. To support his family, he collaborated with other artists on projects. In 1880, Rodin began to work again for Carrier-Belleuse while working on his own sculptures.

“The Gates of Hell” is an unfinished sculpture that would inspire Rodin to use some of the figures in larger sculptures such as “The Kiss” and “The Thinker.” “The Gates of Hell” is an important work of art by Rodin that he worked on for almost 40 years but never finished. Rodin also had a volatile personal life with another artist Camille Claudel for over 20 years.

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