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Katherine Seney Simpson
(Mrs. John W. Simpson), 1902

Dancing Figure, 1905

The Sphinx, model 1880īs,
carved 1909, marble

The National Gallery of Art, Washington

6th Street and Constitution Avenue,
NW, Washington, DC 20565 USA

Tel. 001 - 202 - 737 42 15 (general information)

This collection contains ca. 40 Rodin sculptures and ca. 30 drawings and prints by Rodin. Many of these pieces were donated in 1942 by Katherine Seney Simpson (Mrs. John W. Simpson), one of the most important collectors of Rodinīs art. For her bust portrait, Rodin needed 60 sittings of two hours each, then was so proud of the result he sent it in to various exhibitions.

The Thinker cast is as early as 1901, the Age of Bronze was cast 1898, the Walking Man 1903.

Moreover, this Website has an excellent searchable database which lists all collection titles and gives access to fine images and detailed background information, including provenance, exhibition history and bibliography.

  Click here for a complete list of Rodin work at the NGA.

Some major Rodin theme exhibitions at the NGA:

Sculpture and Drawings by Rodin, opened 22 August 1965

In this exhibition, 28 sculptures and 8 drawings by Rodin from Mrs. John W. Simpson were exhibited for the first time in almost 20 years.

Rodin Drawings, True and False
20 November 1971 - 30 January 1972
Also at the Guggenheim Museum, 9 March -1 4 May 1972

In this exhibition,132 drawings by Rodin and 28 forgeries of the artist's work were presented , extending from earliest student exercises to the late line drawings of dancers and nudes. The exhibition and the catalogue book addressed the question of the chronology of his work and the existence of a large number of forgeries.

One section of the exhibition showed 9 works by the known forger Ernst Durig and two others known as Hand A and Hand B. Following the settlement of the Ernst Durig estate, which included 155 forgeries, J. Kirk T. Varnedoe and Professor Albert Elsen of Stanford University chose to investigate Rodin's work.

   The Drawings of Rodin, by Albert Elsen and J. Kirk T. Varnedoe. New York: Praeger Publishers, Inc., 1971.

Rodin Rediscovered, 28 June 1981 - 2 May 1982

366 catalogued works from about 40 American and European public and private collections filled spaces on each of the East Building's 4 levels. The exhibition recreated on the Upper Level a typical Paris Salon of the 1870s filled with 29 sculpture, continued downward through the building with 9 further sections devoted to different themes of Auguste Rodin's work, and ended on the Concourse Level with a new 8-ton bronze cast of The Gates of Hell with its 186 figures.

This exhibition, organized by Albert Elsen, Kirk Varnedoe and Ruth Butler, was attended by more than 1 million visitors and is claimed to be "the largest exhibition ever devoted to Rodin".

   Catalog: Rodin Rediscovered, by Albert E. Elsen et al. Washington, D.C.: National Gallery of Art, 1981.

Email:Sidney Lawrence
(Head of Public Affairs)
Michele Colburn (Public Affairs Specialist)
Fax: 202-786-2682

Burghers of Calais, cast ca.
1931-1947, Sculpture Garden

Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden / Smithsonian Institution

Independence Ave. on Seventh Street
SW. Washington DC, 20560 USA

Tel. 001 - 202 - 357 13 00
Chief Curator: Neil Benezra

Joseph H. Hirshhorn (1899-1981) was a Latvian-born businessman, financier, and mining magnate from New York who amassed an exceptional collection of modern and contemporary sculpture and painting. Today, the Hirshhorn Museum boasts ca. 3,000 sculptures. Constantin Brancusi, Alexander Calder, Edgar Degas, Alberto Giacometti, Henri Matisse, Henry Moore and David Smith are well represented. From the permanent Rodin collection, ca. 13 sculptures are on view, part of them in the Sculpture Garden. The collection contains also selected sculptures by Carpeaux, Dalou, Daumier, Bourdelle, Despiau and Medardo Rosso.

  Click here for a complete list of Rodin works on view at the Hirshhorn.

The Department of Painting and Sculpture maintains a curatorial research file on the entire permanent collection. recording over 12,000 objects including photographs, official documents, research notes, correspondence, and copies of reference material assembled by the staff.

The Smithsonian Institutions have a searchable database for all different parts of their extensive network of archives and libraries.

   Publications by Valerie J. Fletcher, Curator of Sculpture:
The Human Figure Interpreted: Modern Sculpture from the Hirshhorn Museum: Degas, Rodin, Degas, Matisse, Archipenko, Lipchitz, Giacometti, Marini, Moore. Taiwan: Taipei Museum of Modern Art, 1994, 164 pp., bilingual. Tokyo: Yomiuri Shimbun, 1995, 130 pp., bilingual.

   The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden: 150 Works of Art. New York and Washington DC: Harry N. Abrams and Smithsonian Institution, 1996, 41 entries.


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Last update of this page: 19.09.2003