As part of its mission to make Rodin´s work available to a broad public audience, the Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Foundation organized a series of high-class Rodin exhibitions that traveled through a great number of American Museums as well as numerous institutions abroad.

For an overview see also:


"The Hands of Rodin"

Los Angeles County Museum of Art
December 12, 1996 - March 2, 1997
Los Angeles, California

Philadelphia Museum of Art
March 27 - June 22, 1997
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Brooklyn Museum of Art
July 18 - September 28, 1997
Brooklyn, New York

Museum of Art
Brigham Young Univerity
October 24, 1997 - January 24, 1998
Provo, Utah

Arkansas Arts Center
February 13 - May 17, 1998
Little Rock, Arkansas

Portland Art Museum
June 1, 1998 - August 31, 1998
Portland, Oregon

Large Right Hand, clenched
From the article


"The Hands of Rodin: A Tribute to B. Gerald Cantor's Fifty Years of Collecting" was organized by the Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Foundation and Rachael Blackburn, Curator of Exhibitions at the Foundation. The exhibition also served as a testament to the enthusiasm of Gerald B. Cantor, who died in 1996.

In her extensive article for, Daisy Fried let LACMA´s Curator Mary Levkoff explain the concept behind the exhibition:

— Rodin was fascinated by hands. He modeled thousands, many of them rapid clay sketches which captured them in all their angles and shapes. He kept these 3-D sketches around his studio, studied them as independent forms. He believed the hand didn't depend upon the body to convey meaning. He also tried them out at various angles when he composed new figures. In Hands of Rodin, the same hands can be seen several times on different pedestals, some smaller, some larger.

— The hands' expressive capability is huge. Rodin's hands clench, beg, pray, piano-play, show disease. A vitrine of 26 small ones is one of the most enchanting parts of the show. People argue about the meaning of hand gestures in Rodin's sculptures. For instance, is John the Baptist beckoning or blessing?

— The hand is symbolic. A central piece, The Hand of God, uses a hand to symbolize the creator of humankind. A huge hand cradles a nude man and woman, who may be in the act of procreation themselves. Rodin thought of the hand of the artist-creator as akin to the hand of God the creator.

Ironically, then:

— The hand of the artist is not necessarily necessary.

Many of the Rodins in the Rodin Museum were cast after the artist's death. So were a number of the works in the Hands show, including two versions of She Who Was The Helmet Maker's Beautiful Wife, a sculpture of a nude old woman.

"Rodin´s extraordinary Monument to Victor Hugo"

The practice of casting posthumous bronzes is not without controversy. Gary Arseneau, a Fernandina Beach-based artist and gallery owner, argued that the Monument to Victor Hugo and other sculptures in the exhibit should be clearly labeled ''reproductions posthumously manufactured after Rodin's death with reproduced Rodin signatures'' since they were not completed until after Rodin had died and could not have been signed by him.

Museum officials and Rachael Blackburn, representing the Cantor Foundation, replied posthumous casting of bronzes is common practice, that the process used in creating this bronze conforms to French law, and that the date on the posthumously cast bronzes makes it clear they were executed after Rodin's death.

The other three Museums hosting this exhibition:

Los Angeles County Museum of Art
17 Dec. 1998 - 15 March1999
Los Angeles, California

Portland Art Museum
13 April 1999 - 11 June 1999
Portland, Oregon

The Metropolitan Museum of Art
6 Oct. 1999 - 2 Jan. 2000
New York, New York


Cummer Museum of Art & Gardens

829 Riverside Avenue
Jacksonville, Florida
32204 USA

Tel. 001 - 904 - 356 68 57
Fax 001 - 904 - 353 41 01

Curatorial: Maarten van de Guchte, Ext. 216,

"Rodin´s extraordinary Monument to Victor Hugo"
8 July 1999 - 19 Sept. 1999

This exhibition included twenty sculptures by Rodin in bronze, marble, plaster and terra cotta, as well as several works on paper. The focal point of the exhibition is Rodin’s bronze Monument to Victor Hugo. This single sculpture weighs 2,750 pounds and has dimensions of 6’x 9’x 5’. The exhibited copy of the monument, originally commissioned in 1889, was cast in bronze in 1996 (second cast).

Read the review by Charlie Patton for or visit the Cantor Foundations´s Virtual Gallery.

Rodins design for the Monument to be placed in front of the Pantheon had to match Jean-Antoine Injalbert´s Monument to Mirabeau, but since Rodin choose for a more horizontal view, the dimensions did not fit together and his design was rejected. The model was rescheduled for erection in a the Gardens of the Palais Royal.

  The exhibition was accompanied by the book "Rodin´s Monument to Victor Hugo" by Ruth Butler, Jeanine Parisier Plottel and Jane Mayo Roos, produced by Merrel Holberton Publishers, London, 1998. The book documents the history of Rodin´s and Injalbert´s designs and has very fine photos of the different versions of the Monument and the various Muses.

"Rodin at the Rockefeller Center"

The Three Shades on Fifth Avenue,
bronze, Cantor Collection
Photo: Andrew Moore

A photo from a personal Website
published by Eileene Coscolluela

Rockefeller Center, New YORK

630 Fifth Avenue (at 48th Street)
New York, New York 10020 USA

Tel. 001 - 212 - 332 34 00
Fax 001 - 212 - 332 34 01

The Art Deco office building complex consists of 19 buildings and scores of upscale shops and restaurants. Since 1932, art has been an integral part of Rockefeller Center. With over 100 works by more than 30 artists, the Center holds an important public art collection.

From 17 June 1998 - 31 August 1998, the Rockefeller Center showed eight large-scale bronze sculptures by Rodin on loan from the Cantor Foundation, arranged in a traditional French Garden setting.

Beginning on Fifth Avenue with The Three Shades, visitors were invited along the Channel Gardens to a central grove providing an intimate setting for the Burghers of Calais, alongside Whistler's Muse, Meditation and Monumental Torso of the Walking Man. The show also included The Thinker, which had been transported from its traditional place at Stanford University to New York.

For comments on the Thinker´s trip:

Cantor Exhibitions Part II...

Terms of Use  Copyright Policy    Menu missing?  Back one page  Reload this page   Top of this page 

Notice: Museum logos appear only as buttons linking to Museum Websites and do not imply any
formal approval of RODIN-WEB pages by these institutions. For details see Copyright Policy.
© Copyright 1992 - September 2003 for data collection & design by Hans de Roos - All Rights Reserved.
Last update of this page: 19.09.2003