Auguste Rodin Photographed in his Studio by Paul Francois Arnold Cardon (Dornac) 1898 Buy Art Prints Now
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Tom Gurney BSc (Hons) is an art history expert with over 20 years experience
Published on June 19, 2020 / Updated on October 14, 2023
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This special photograph perfectly captures the sculptor, Auguste Rodin. He looks fierce and passionate, notice how the same intense expression over many years is starting to leave it's mark between his eye brows.

Here we find the sculptor in his studio, the place where he spent most of his time once his career was up and running. He would invite many of the great photographers to visit him here and carry out a series of requests that he would give to them. Whilst he respected their technical skills, he did not see a creative side in photography to the same level of painting or sculpture and this was the main opinion of the late 19th century. He was essentially hiring them to perform a service and the main things he would request would be the odd portrait but mainly to depict his different sculptures as a record of their development. He had been questioned on occasion by academics and so offered photographic proof but he would also start to use these photographs as a way of evaluating the progress of them and then perhaps make amendments as he went. He would also draw or paint directly over some of the photographic prints as a means to planning more changes.

One the many who visited his studio, this photography was actually taken by Paul Francois Arnold Cardon, frequently known as Dornac. He was a Frenchman who became familiar with a good number of different artists across this nation. He also took portrait photographs of the likes of Auguste Renoir, Emile Zola and also Pierre Janet. His work is now found at some major art galleries, such as MoMA in the US and it is easy to understand how he came to be invited into the world of Auguste Rodin. He would also have been experienced in dealing with creative people, who are not always the easiest of personalities to deal with, particularly once they have achieved success within their careers.

Rodin is now considered one of the finest sculptors in history, and was both technically impressive but also brought about a number of important development that helped to modernise the medium. We are all aware of the great classic sculptors such as Michelangelo, Bernini and Donatello, but Rodin brought about a movement towards modern sculpture through his daring his creative work. In terms of modern sculpture, you may also be interested in the achievements of Constantin Brâncuși. Whilst there is not quite the same interest from the public in sculpture as there used to be, it is still highly respected and also has links to some of the great civilisations of the past. There is also a much wider variety of sculpture today, with huge installations that can excite new audiences for the first time, sometimes before they have even entered the particular art rooms of the particular institution.

Auguste Rodin Photographed in his Studio by Paul Francois Arnold Cardon (Dornac) 1898 in Detail