Auguste Rodin

Auguste Rodin

by Rainer Maria Rilke
     
 

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This volume presents English translations of two pieces by Rainer Maria Rilke discussing the work of Auguste Rodin. Written in 1902 and 1907, the essays explore Rodin's working habits, his understanding of the human body, and the development of his art. The volume also features an introductory essay by William Gass (author of Reading Rilke) and arresting color…  See more details below

Overview

This volume presents English translations of two pieces by Rainer Maria Rilke discussing the work of Auguste Rodin. Written in 1902 and 1907, the essays explore Rodin's working habits, his understanding of the human body, and the development of his art. The volume also features an introductory essay by William Gass (author of Reading Rilke) and arresting color photographs of Rodin's sculptures. Annotation ©2004 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Combining Daniel Slagers's elegant translation from the German of Rilke's writings on Rodin with Michael Eastman's photographs of Rodin's sculptures, Auguste Rodin offers a fresh look at an unlikely mentorship. —The New York Times Book Review

Brilliant and subtle but richly colored new photographs of Rodin's sculptures by Michael Eastman make this new translation of Rilke's classic meditation on Auguste Rodin a feast for the eye and mind. National Book Critics Circle Award winner Wiliam Gass examines the text and the setting to provide insight and context. Fine writing, beautiful images, and exciting ideas make this edition of Rilke's Auguste Rodin a real treat. —R.K. Dickson

Poets and the visual arts—it is a vast subject; and all through the twentieth century artists and writers collaborated almost constantly, sometimes with such intensity that it seemed as if they were passing back and forth a single flask labeled 'Inspiration.' Few poets have written more eloquently about the visual arts than Rilke, and one of the most beautiful books of the year is his Auguste Rodin (Archipelago Books, $30), translated by Daniel Slager, with photographs by Michael Eastman, which bring us close to the charged surfaces of Rodin's bronzes, and catch their storm-tossed intensity. Rodin was at times a disturbingly bombastic artist—while his Gates of Hell may be the work of a genius, it is also pure kitsch—but in the years just after 1900, when Rilke got to know him, the avant-garde was still inclined to embrace Rodin as a rough-hewn visionary, a man in whose studio, as Rilke wrote, 'everything was becoming, but nothing was in a hurry.' For Rilke, both Rodin and Cézanne suggested, through the very physicality of their labors, a route beyond fin-de-siècle preciosity. Rilke discovered in Rodin a man who was utterly committed to the materiality of the artistic vocation. Rodin taught Rilke to make his feelings concrete. —Ruth Franklin

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781406846904
Publisher:
Echo Library
Publication date:
09/28/2014
Pages:
48
Product dimensions:
5.98(w) x 9.02(h) x 0.11(d)

Read an Excerpt

We can pretend to know precisely. At three o’clock on the Monday afternoon of September 1, 1902, bearing the appropriate petitions of entry, although he had arranged his visit in advance, the twenty-six-year-old poet Rainer Maria Rilke appeared on the stoop of Auguste Rodin’s Paris studio, and was given an uncustomary gentle and cour- teous reception. Of course Rilke had written Rodin a month before to warn of his impending arrival. It was a letter baited with the sort of fulsome praise you believe only when it is said of yourself, and it must have been an additional pleasure for Rodin to be admired by a stranger so young, as well as someone with a commission to write of the sculptor and the sculptor’s work as hand- somely as, in his correspondence, he already had.

Meet the Author

Rainer Maria Rilke (1875–1926) was one of the greatest German-language authors of the 20th century. He is renowned for both his poetry and prose.

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