This was my first time to visit Auguste Rodin Museum, known as The Musée Rodin, in Paris. It was strangely in a highly policed neighborhood full of guards with automatic assault rifles and government buildings. It felt like there were important dignitaries such as royalty or heads of state there given the level of security.
But, as got closer to the museum, the neighborhood transformed, and we found ourselves in a beautiful garden looking on The Thinker, probably Rodin’s most well-known sculpture. We would see smaller versions of The Thinker throughout the museum, as well as drawings for the piece … a reminder of the importance of studies before doing a huge bronze piece.
This is a museum for kids who don’t necessarily like art museums. The gardens allow for cavorting and blowing off steam. While there are buildings with exhibits inside, most of Rodin’s major works are large bronze sculptures placed outside.
There are also strategically placed and plentiful benches for taking a break. This is a beautiful museum to visit when the weather is nice.
The Musée Rodin in Paris, France, opened in 1919 and is dedicated primarily to the works of the French sculptor Auguste Rodin. It includes 6,600 sculptures, 8,000 drawings, 8,000 old photographs, and 7,000 objets d’art.
Rodin donated his entire collection of sculptures – along with paintings by Vincent van Gogh, Claude Monet, and Pierre-Auguste Renoir that he had acquired – to the French State on the condition that they turn the buildings into a museum dedicated to his works.
Visit Rodin’s significant creations here including The Thinker, The Kiss, and The Gates of Hell which are on display in the museum’s beautiful gardens. The museum also includes a room dedicated to the works of Camille Claudel.
I could only find a few children’s books on Auguste Rodin. Please let me know your suggestions and I’ll add to the list.
Children’s Books on Auguste Rodin
Little Sap and Monsieur Rodin by Michelle Lord, illustrated by Felicia Hoshino
Little Sap is part of the Cambodian royal dance troupe and they are traveling to France to perform! Their dances tell stories, with hand motions signifying different objects a fruit, flower, or leaf. After their performance, a famous French artist wants to draw them. Monsieur Rodin pulled Little Sap to the front of the line when he sketched the dancers. He ended up choosing three dancers to work with and Little Sap was one of them. They became part of his famous Danseuse Cambogienne sketches. [picture book, ages 6 and up]
Rodin et Les Danseuses Cambodgiennes at Musee Rodin
The Life and Work of Auguste Rodin by Richard Tames
This early chapter book is not my favorite style of nonfiction, but it is easy to read and is full of interesting facts about Rodin’s life, including his childhood. Rodin started to reach success at age forty. His most famous statue, The Thinker, is meant to be the Italian poet Dant for an elaborate doorway called The Gates of Hell. The Hotel Biron became Rodin’s home and then was converted to a museum. [early chapter book nonfiction, ages 6 and up]
How about you? Are you a fan of Auguste Rodin? Would you visit his museum?
p.s. All my posts on art are here: art with kids and applying to art college.
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4 thoughts on “Auguste Rodin Museum and Books for Kids”
Perfect! I am taking my kiddos to France next year, so your travel advice is VERY timely.
I LOVE the Rodin Museum – took my kids there in 2014. I also vividly remember visiting with my parents when I was 13…there was a blind woman touring the gallery, and they allowed her to run her hands over the sculptures, to “see” through her fingertips. It was a powerful moment that has stuck with me for 40 years!
Did you see the Chat Noir poster or any Steinlen exhibits in Montmartre? That same trip to Paris in 2014 inspired me to write The Artist Who Loved Cats biography!
I love the Rodin Museum and so do my daughters. A family visit to Paris in 2015 when I lost a ball of yarn inspired me to write my first children’s book, “Lulu and Lainey … a French Yarn”.