MADRID.- French artist Auguste Rodin is the protagonist of The Nude Body, an exhibition containing drawings and sculptures in which the erotic and sensual dominate. The galleries of the Fundacion Mapfre in Madrid received the works of art last week and will be showing them until July 6. Ninety drawings and 33 sculptures, made by Rodin (1840-1917), are on view.
Nude women, brushing their hair, with open legs, touching and exhibiting themselves are the visual component of the drawing exhibit which comes from the Rodin Museum in Paris.
Some of Rodins best known sculptures are being shown in Madrid. A plaster for The Kiss and Lovers Hands are included. These works of art along with The Eternal Idol, underline the importance of sexual desire in Rodins work, which can also be seen in Iris, Messenger of the Gods and Kneeling Woman.
The male body is also represented to a lesser extent as in The Age of Bronze. Experts point out that Rodin does not draw as if his works were sketches, but that he conceives his drawings as independent works of art, in a manner which transmits, on paper, that reality is not something static but with movement.
Pablo Jimenez, Director of the Instituto de Cultura de la Fundación Mapfre (Fundacion Mapfre Cultural Institute), says that the exhibit shows the essential Rodin, which aims to present the nude body in a new way.
Rodin is without a doubt the great renovator of the turn of the century. He takes traditional sculpture and moves it to the 20th century. He plays the role of balancing tradition and openness towards the modern. His works of art provoke a great impact, he stated.
Rodin has a special talent to transmit sexuality, beauty and sensuality: In his sculptures he does not need to get to explicit scenes to transmit sexuality, Jimenez said.
The head of the Rodin Museum, Dominique Vieville, said during the opening of the exhibit that the collection shows a great diversity of themes and forms of drawing. The theme of the sexual female body, its most erotic aspect, is not exceptional but constitutes most of his work, said Vieville.