From the very beginning of his career, Rodin would insist that his models move around his studio, rather than adopt classical, academic postures. The sculptor's fascination with movement evolved into a fascination with dance, and this relationship is to be the focus of a 2016 Courtauld Exhibition, Rodin's Dancers, a collection of drawings and sculpture.
At the heart of the show are the Dance Movements: a series of small-scale works that were found in Rodin's studio after his death in 1917. These are gorgeous little things, sculpted in terracotta and plaster and improbably kinetic. The works are based on real encounters: Rodin was enthralled by the Royal Cambodian dance troupe who visited Paris in 1906 (“I am a man who has devoted all his life to the study of nature, and whose constant admiration has been for the works of antiquity,” he wrote. “They made the antique live in me.”) Not to mention the various models (read: lovers) who would visit the artist's studio after dark.
These are joyous works: the furthest cry from the bulk of The Thinker or Kiss - enough to lighten the darkest of winter afternoons.
|What||Rodin and Dance review, Courtauld Gallery|
|Where||Courtauld Gallery, Strand, London, WC2R 0RN | MAP|
|Nearest tube||Temple (underground)|
20 Oct 16 – 22 Jan 17, Daily 10am – 6pm (last admission 5.30pm)
|Price||£7 for adults|
|Website||Click here for more information|