Auguste Rodin, the most famous artist in the world at the turn of the 20th century, led a life as sensational and intense as the great sculptures he created. An accomplished Rodin scholar draws on closely guarded archives and letters to disentangle the facts from the many myths. 150 illus.Auguste Rodin, the most famous artist in the world at the turn of the 20th century, led a life as sensational and intense as the great sculptures he created. An accomplished Rodin scholar draws on closely guarded archives and letters to disentangle the facts from the many myths. 150 illus.Read Less
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Publishers Weekly, 1996-05-13 Butler's biography of the legendary sculptor draws extensively from the artist's own voluminous correspondence. (June)
Publishers Weekly, 1993-08-30 Auguste Rodin (1840-1917), the sculptor whose Balzac , Victor Hugo and The Thinker were part of a grandiose hymn to male genius, was obsessed with female anatomy and the physical basis of sexuality, as his thousands of erotic female nude drawings make clear. Drawing on archival sources, Butler, art professor at the University of Massachusetts, illuminates Rodin's heroic quest and his relationships with women in this detailed, richly illustrated biographical study. Overwhelmed by grief at the death in 1862 of his older sister, Maria, Rodin, suggests Butler, relived an oedipal attachment to her through his obsessive love for his protege, Camille Claudel. Meanwhile, he treated his common-law wife Marie-Rose Beuret as a ``desexualized mother'' who tended his hearth. Claudel went mad after Rodin reneged on his promise to marry her, but Butler challenges the standard image of Rodin as a male chauvinist, arguing that willful, ambitious Claudel ``tyrannized'' Rodin and imagined herself replacing him as France's preeminent sculptor. Butler portrays a titan hiding anger and lifelong loneliness beneath his immense charm. (Oct.)
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