L'accident | L'aléatoire
Texts by François Blanchetière, Christina Buley-Uribe, Thierry Dufrêne, Dario Gamboni, Antoinette Le Normand-Romain, Laurence Madeline, Hélène Pinet, Raphaëlle Richet, Alicia Robinson and, Bernard Vouilloux
“The master’s thoughts, even his writing, are clear to see. It is a work that no apprentice, no retouching has dishonoured. It is the sculptor’s initial emotion, his true work, his soul’s soul.” Mathias Morhardt (speaking about The Tragic Muse)
As the father of modern sculpture, Auguste Rodin (1840–1917) showed the way to the leading artists of the twentieth century. Although certainly making an impact in the way he focused on the fragment and the importance he attributed to leaving a work unfinished, he also breathed new life into the medium by introducing the idea of the evanescent and the accidental.
Rodin was happy to take advantage of the results of pure chance and to let elements that had nothing to do with any personal initiative help him create his intended effect. The accidental became part of the creative process.
The exhibition on which this book is based took advantage of the extraordinary involvement of the Musée Rodin to explore a new theme through some twenty-four sculptures gathered around The Tragic Muse, donated to the Musée d’Art et d’Histoire of Geneva by Rodin himself.
François Blanchetière is a curator of cultural heritage and has been deputy head of conservation at the Musée Rodin since 2005.
Christina Buley-Uribe is an art historian and the author of essays on Rodin’s drawings.
Thierry Dufrêne currently teaches History of Contemporary Art at the University of Paris Ouest Nanterre.
Dario Gamboni holds the chair of Contemporary Art History at the University of Geneva.
Antoinette Le Normand-Romain is chief curator of cultural heritage and has been Director of the Institut national d’histoire de l’art (INHA), in Paris, since 2006.
Laurence Madeline is head curator in the Department of Fine Arts at the Musée d’Art et d’Histoire, in Geneva.
Hélène Pinet is head of research and scientific supervisor of the photographic collections in the Musée Rodin.
Raphaëlle Richet is a member of the foreign television series purchasing committee at Canal + and pursues research on drama theory in television writing.
Alicia Robinson has been senior curator in the Sculpture, Metalwork, Ceramics, and Glass Department at the V&A in London since 2006, as well as being in charge of post-medieval French sculpture.
Bernard Vouilloux is professor of Twentieth-century French Literature at the University of Paris IV-Sorbonne.