How did Rodin make these sculptures?
Rodin used the "sand casting" method. He would have created his intended form in clay, then built a mould around it using a mixture of special sand, salt, and a binding agent. When the mould was ready, he would remove the clay from the center and then pour liquid bronze into the mould. Unlike other bronze casting techniques available at the time, sand casting allows for the creation of multiples.
Why do you have so many Rodin sculptures?
We received many of the Rodin works currently on view as a gift from the Cantor Foundation in 1980s. The Cantor Foundation is interested creating opportunities to further explore the works of Rodin and his contemporaries.
This doesn't seem like a typical Rodin.
Great observation. This sculpture, "The Age of Bronze" is very naturalistic and smooth. It shows that Rodin was perfectly capable of sculpting life-like figures—even if he rarely chose to do so. In general, Rodin valued energetic, expressive figures over anatomical correctness. When this work was first shown, critics accused Rodin of casting a model's body because it is so naturalistic!
In fact, what he had done was study a single model over a period of eighteen months, observing his body and even its imperfections with incredible attention to detail. This bronze version is a reduced iteration of the life sized plaster that critics first saw in 1877.
So nice, in fact, that people actually thought that sculpture was fake at first because it was too perfect. Rodin first presented a life-size version that viewers thought was just a man covered in bronze, but Rodin was just really talented!