The Rodin museum is located in the heart of Paris city, very near to the Esplanade des Invalides. This museum houses an incredible collection of famous works by Augste Rodin that attracts many tourists to the place. The place also has a luxurious garden that is very beautiful. The museum should not be missed in your Paris tour, as the place can cater to everyone’s taste.
A Brief History
The Musée Rodin or the Rodin Museum is located in an 18th Century mansion where Augste Rodin once lived and worked. The mansion is placed behind a walled garden, away from the noises of the busy city. History says that the mansion was built for a Paris wigmaker and eventually became the property of the city of Paris. Made in the Rococo style between the periods 1727 to 1732 by the famous architect Jean Aubert, the mansion is worth a inclusion in every Paris tour. The view of the gardens from the large French windows of the mansion is captivating. Augste Rodin occupied the south facing rooms on the ground floor of the mansion.
The state took possession of the property in 1911 and planned to transform it into ‘The Rodin Museum.’ Rodin donated all of his drawings and sculptures together with their rights to the state in the year 1916. However, the great artist died in 1917, before seeing the realization of the museum in 1917. The 18th Century mansion is now the ‘Hotel Biron’ that is named after a former owner, Marechal de Biron. Hotel Biron has been the home to ‘The Rodin Museum’ since 1919.
The Hotel Biron covers three hectares of land and was opened in 1730. Rodin moved into the museum in 1908 and lived there until his death. In 1919, the Hotel Biron was officially opened as the main museum that displays the works of Rodin. The museum now has about 400 pieces of art by Rodin displayed in its galleries and the surrounding garden.
The most famous of all the works by Rodin is ‘The Thinker’. You can find ‘The Thinker’ in the outdoor exhibition of the museum. The sculpture was made in 1880 and is displayed in the garden that is opposite to ‘The Gates of Hell.’ You can stop by the statue and check it out before proceeding to ‘The Gates of Hell.’ Many experts believe that ‘The Gates of Hell’ is the masterpiece of Rodin and depicts a scene from ‘The Inferno of Dante’s Divine Comedy’. In fact, it is said that the work of ‘The Gates of Hell’ consumed the last three decades of Rodin’s life. The great artist died before completing the structure.
You can also find other statues in the garden like ‘The Burghers of Calais’ and ‘Balzac.’ Rodin made many busts of famous figures and friends including the Austrian composer Gustav Mahler, the French writer Victor Hugo, and the English writer Vita Sackville-West. You can find these creations in the museum. One of the earlier statues by Rodin, ‘The Bronze Age,’ was inspired by an Italian trip, where the artist studies various sculptures made by the Italian Renaissance artist Michelangelo. The marble statue by Rodin, ‘The Kiss,’ was once considered inappropriate for public watching. However, it has now became the centerpiece of the museum
The museum houses a great collection of sketches and sculptures by the artist and includes ‘The Cathedral’, ‘The Secret’, ‘The Danaide’, ‘The Kiss’ and ‘The Messenger of the Gods.’ The museum also houses works by the former student of Rodin, Camille Claudel. Her work, ‘The Waltz’, is a small bronze sculpture that is less than a meter high. It portrays the tenderness, power, and beauty of human beings.
The garden surrounding the mansion is a beautiful place and the best news for travelers in Paris tour is that the entry fee to the garden is very low. The most popular works like ‘The Gates of Hell’ and ‘The Thinker’ can be found in the garden. The gardens are a wonderful place to stay away from the hot sun and crowds of the city.
You can find shaded copses with wood loungers where you can enjoy a Parisian picnic or relax with a book. There is also an area in the garden that is populated by Biblical figures, and a beautiful fountain that offers great opportunity to take photos. You may even capture images of the Eiffel Tower and the dome of ‘Les Invalides.’
Tourists on Paris tour can visit the museum every day except Mondays. Moreover, the place will stay closed on December 25, January 1, and May 1. Young tourists under the age of 18 from non European Union nations, disabled visitors, and young people under 25 years of age from European Union countires are admitted free to Musée Rodin.