The Easel

How Much Rodin Is Too Much?

When is a Rodin sculpture an ‘original’ Rodin sculpture? He carved Gates of Hell in plaster but died before it was cast in bronze. Posthumous ‘copies’ of this and other works are controlled by Musée Rodin (as Rodin intended) which funds itself from the proceeds. Many museums, believing that owning a Rodin affirms their status, are eager buyers. A complex mix, the writer observes, of access to art, artworld conventions, and financial self-interest.