Monday 11 July 2011

Favourite Classic Artists, and bonus Musee Rodin

My art education via Junior Non Fiction continues. A small book with a two page spread on a small selection of world famous artists. Constable. Turner. Rembrandt. Manet. Renoir. Rodin. Cezanne. Klimt. Cassat. Sadly they chose only to print one painting from each artist. Although there are weblinks and gallery suggestions of more. But it's hard to get to Paris, Washington, London and Cardiff to see some more of Renoir's works. Much as I might want to. The book is part of the Wayland Weblinks series, and the inside cover is devoted to tips on internet safety for children.

An adult reader can still learn from even these short bio pieces. Cezanne was clearly a troubled person. When a children's book mentions several times that he could be violent and moody, that he spent more and more time living alone, and that he was embittered by the time he found fame in the 1890s then you know there's something going on there.

I also learnt that the beautiful Musee Rodin which I was lucky enough to visit last year, was a former Hotel, where Rodin lived from 1908. That makes it even more special. The grounds of Musee Rodin are astonishing. Sadly, we ran out of time during our visit, and didn't get to go inside the Musee building.

I'll be very keen to make another visit to the Musee Rodin on my next visit to Paris, which is a bit surprising as I wasn't all that enthused about seeing it before we went. Mr Wicker was very keen so I went along for the sake of marital harmony, and I absolutely fell in love with the place.

Pride of place near the entrance

A year before his death in 1917 Rodin donated all of his works to the people of France. Which helps explain why there are so many of these very famous works on easy public display. What a wonderful and generous legacy. 

What I came to realise is the rather famous Gate of Hell (white version on display at Musee d'Orsay)

There's a lovely little cafe in the grounds of Musee Rodin where the food is not standard tourist trap level (this is a rather French practice, they make an effort everywhere). We all happily had a lovely filled turkish bread, and then a selection of desserts, in glass, with proper spoons.

You can add to the street art as you leave

Which really makes this post about Paris in July, even though I tried to make it about something else. 


Genie -- Paris and Beyond said...

Oh, I was there in April and loved the gardens as did you. I even saw the post with the colorful stickers on the way out. I will post a photo this week from the interior of the Hôtel Biron to whet your appetite for the next trip.


Louise said...

Oh how fabulous. I'll be looking forward to it even more than I usually do. Thanks so much Genie.

Anonymous said...

I loved the Musee Rodin when we went to Paris (don't ask me how long ago because it's been embarrassingly too long). When we were in Japan in May, we went to the Tokyo Museum of Western Art. It had a surprisingly large number of Rodin pieces including some I didn't know.

Oh, and I loved buying children's art books when our kids were young. As you say they can provide a nice little intro for adults too!

Louise said...

Ah that's the beauty of Paris isn't it? Some of it has been the same for a very long time. It's the agony too. I'm sure today is another beautiful day at Musee Rodin, and some lucky folks, not me, are there. Rodin's output was rather impressive, he made hundreds of pieces. Interesting to see some in Japan. I saw on the weekend Japan are taking out double page ads to try and lure tourists back. I know so little about art and artists that I can learn something from pretty much any source.

Yvonne @ Fiction Books Reviews said...

Hi Louise,

Living just across the channel from this beautiful city of culture, I am ashamed to say that we have not visited Paris for many years!!

I love some of the great bite-sized chunks of information that are available in childrens books these days, although sadly all too few children seem to have an interest in reading by the time they reach their teens!!!

Art has always alluded me, apart from my school learning on the subject and your series of books sound like great fun and would probably interest me.

I picked up a great series of childrens books, that were written in the style of diary entries, that were fiction, but based on fact, about all the great historical events of English history.
I became so engrossed in them (we have no children by the way), that I have passed them on to my mother-in-law, who is now busy reading them!!

Some of the books for children are much more fun than the adult version!!