Mmf

The Thinker (plaster)

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The Thinker was originally conceived as part of The Gates of Hell, monumental bronze doors commissioned for a proposed Museum of Decorative Arts in Paris. This was Rodin’s first major government commission. He planned an assembly of 180 figures inspired by Dante Alighieri’s poem Inferno. Ultimately, plans for the museum fell through and The Gates were never completed. However, it became the defining project of Rodin’s career, providing him with a storehouse of figures to rework, rearrange and repurpose. In 1888, Rodin developed The Thinker as an independent work. Like most of his sculptures, it was originally modelled in clay, then cast in plaster. The resulting form could be copied, enlarged to monumental size, and transposed to bronze or marble. Rodin never replicated the exact physical proportions of his models, and these differences became even more pronounced when the sculpture was enlarged. The Thinker’s foot was later presented as a work in its own right, mounted on a decorative plaster pedestal.

Tags:
sculpture
study
Rodin
Thinker
photogrammetry
clay
tate
52cb67b113714c45e8417ba399cce47f7df4692a
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