Camille Claudel

from 15 April to 20 July 2008

“ I showed her where she would find gold, but the gold she finds is her very own.” Auguste Rodin 

The Rodin Museum devote a major retrospective of Camille Claudel’s work.This exhibition will consist of her most important works, with over 80 sculptures in marble, terracotta, plaster, onyx and bronze, as well as about ten engravings and drawings from public and private collections. Certain documents, including correspondence between Rodin and Camille Claudel as well as photographs of that period, will also be on display.

A retrospective to finally view Camille Claudel’s sculptures independently of Rodin

This retrospective sheds new light on the artistic career, punctuated by masterpieces, of an artist who is at present known more for her private life than her own creations. After having been judged for a long time in reference to Rodin, the art of Camille Claudel is now considered to be profoundly original, intense and radiant in its own right. The goal of this exhibition is to examine the work of this free-spirited artist outside the context of her love affair with Rodin. 

The time has therefore arrived to study the work of Camille Claudel and her place in the artistic movement of the late 19th century. Did Camille Claudel succeed in creating a decidedly modern sculpture, on the fringe of the work of Rodin? How did she develop as a woman, student and sculptress in the studio? What kind of strategy could a sculptress pursue at the end of the 19th century? These are the kind of questions that the exhibition will seek to answer. 

An oeuvre inspired by “a dramatic, intoxicating and even tragic current” (B. Gaudichon) 

The oeuvre of Camille Claudel is considered to bear the mark of Rodin’s influence. It is true that the master exerted a great influence on his student. But the opposite is also true, to such an extent that it is sometimes difficult to distinguish between the work achieved by each of these two artists. However, the sculptures of Camille Claudel also express an incredibly creative power.
This exhibition is an opportunity to discover, or rediscover, the works that shaped the fame of the sculptress: The Waltz, a couple of graceful dancers seemingly carried away by a whirlwind; Maturity, an autobiographic work symbolising the end of her affair with Rodin: The Wave or The Gossips, typical examples of sculptures in which Camille Claudel breaks away from the master to create more personal works, strongly influenced by the decorative arts and by Japonism. 
A number of works will be presented to the public for the first time, for instance the plaster of The Wounded Niobid, deposited by the French State at the Bejaia Museum in Algeria in 1935, and small terracotta studies from museum collections recently reattributed to Camille Claudel. 

Camille Claudel, an artist loved by the general public

Before being presented at the Rodin Museum in Paris, the exhibition will be shown in Madrid from November 2007 to February 2008, thanks to the support of the Mafre Foundation.
Curator-in-Chief of the Exhibition: Dominique Viéville

Curators of the Exhibition: Aline Magnien, Véronique Mattiussi 


Crédits photo : © ADAGP, Paris, 2012