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Rodin / Dunikowski. Visions of Women 08.10.2016-15.01.2017 Rodin / Dunikowski. Visions of Women
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The exhibition on display in the Szołayski House will constitute an attempt to confront the works of two outstanding personalities: the French sculpture master Auguste Rodin and the Polish artist Xawery Dunikowski. We will present 76 objects: paintings, sculptures and drawings, all of which depict women. As many as 30 works will be transferred from the Musée Rodin in Paris.

The art of Auguste Rodin (1840-1917) pushed reflections upon sculpture into another dimension and into new era. The sculptor, using his thorough knowledge of human anatomy and psychology, mastered the skill of expressing a rich variety of feelings and human soul. According to Rodin, it was mostly the body, its dynamics, pose and tension that conveyed the emotional states. This approach was ground-breaking in the history of sculpture and fundamentally separated it from the previous era. Xawery Dunikowski (1875–1964) claimed that "it was only Rodin who unveiled nature to the French and its relation to the existence. There is life in his sculptures". In Dunikowski’s early works, a certain fixation on the French master’s oeuvre is evident. Even though the artist himself never admitted to have been inspired with the Frenchman’s works, he nevertheless highly estimated them: "In my view, the greatest contemporary sculptor is Auguste Rodin. He created a synthesis of figurative and spatial thinking, antique art and the art
of Michelangelo, the impressionist breath and the realistic confinement of man to earth".

Dunikowski, one generation younger, underwent formation in Rodin’s orbit. Konstanty Laszczka, his teacher at the School of Fine Arts in Krakow, directly passed on to him the fundamental ideas of the French sculptor. When Dunikowski arrived in Paris in 1914, he must have had many an opportunity to see Rodin’s works. We know of no documents or memoirs which would confirm that the artist got to know Rodin personally during his residency in Paris. The thought seems very probable anyway.

An influence of Rodin upon Dunikowski is obvious while the Polish sculptor does not imitate Rodin’s manner, instead making use of the latter’s achievements in forming his own artistic personality. Dunikowski and Rodin were separated by more than an era. However, we can observe a lot of similarities in their lives, a similar approach towards their artistic creation that formed the approach towards themselves, a narcissist exclusive focus on their own needs and aspirations. Both were aware of the uniqueness of their talents and personalities, and understood their art as a mission, a vocation, one dare say, almost priesthood. According to Rodin, "art is a kind of religion".

Both in Rodin’s and Dunikowski’s art, the most often depicted figure is that of woman. Their view on woman, the manner they depicted gestures and emotions and selected the themes carries a lot of analogies. Rodin admired women as perfect forms of nature and strived to reveal their primordial, erotic power. Dunikowski, inclined to naturalism and symbolism, depicted in sculpture the forces of nature embodied by women. In official portraits, often made on commission, or intimate ones of persons with whom the artists were emotionally close, it is evident that woman was the greatest source of inspiration for both sculptors.

Autor: Ewa Ziembińska

The Feliks Jasieński Szołayski House

pl. Szczepański 9, 31-011 Kraków
  • Monday: closed
  • tues-fri: 10-16
  • Sat: 10 - 18
  • Sunday: 10 - 16
Auguste Rodin, Camille Claudel, 1881
Works by Auguste Rodin
Auguste Rodin, Eve, 1881
Musée Rodin, Paris
© musee Rodin (photo Christian Baraja)
Works by Auguste Rodin
Auguste Rodin, Narcissus, after 1882
Musée Rodin, Paris
© agence photographique du musee Rodin - Pauline Hisbacq
Works by Auguste Rodin
Auguste Rodin, Crouching Woman, 1882
Musée Rodin, Paris
© musee Rodin (photo Christian Baraja)
Works by Auguste Rodin
Auguste Rodin, Alsatian Woman (Rose Beuret), ca. 1882 (?)
Musée Rodin, Paris
© musee Rodin (photo Christian Baraja)
Works by Auguste Rodin
Auguste Rodin, Creation of Woman, 1894
Musée Rodin, Paris
© musee Rodin (photo Herve Lewandowski)
Works by Auguste Rodin
Auguste Rodin, Danaid, Small Model, 1885
Musée Rodin, Paris
Works by Auguste Rodin
Auguste Rodin, Young Mother, 1885
Musée Rodin, Paris

© agence photographique du musee Rodin - Jerome Manoukian
Works by Auguste Rodin
Camille Claudel (1864–1943), Portrait of Rodin, 1888–1889
Musée Rodin, Paris

© musee Rodin (photo Christian Baraja)
Works by Auguste Rodin
Auguste Rodin, Porphyry Table, ca. 1900
Musée Rodin, Paryż
© musee Rodin (photo Jean de Calan)
Works by Auguste Rodin
Auguste Rodin, Standing Sapphic Couple, ca. 1900
Musée Rodin, Paryż
© musee Rodin (photo Jean de Calan)
Works by Auguste Rodin
Auguste Rodin, Seated Female Nude with Outstretched Legs and One Hand Under Her Thigh, ca. 1900
Musée Rodin, Paris
© musee Rodin (photo Jean de Calan)
Works by Auguste Rodin
Auguste Rodin, Hand of Devil, 1903
Musée Rodin, Paris

© agence photographique du musee Rodin - Jerome Manoukian
Works by Auguste Rodin
Xawery Dunikowski, Pregnant Woman I, 1906
property: the National Museum in Warsaw
photo by Ernest Wińczyk
Works by Xawery Dunikowski
Xawery Dunikowski, Self-Portrait. I Go Towards the Sun, 1917
property: the National Museum in Warsaw
photo by Ernest Wińczyk
Works by Xawery Dunikowski
Xawery Dunikowski, Head of Sara, 1917–1920
property: the National Museum in Warsaw
photo by Ernest Wińczyk
Works by Xawery Dunikowski
Xawery Dunikowski, Eve I, ca. 1927 (after plaster version of 1906)
property: the National Museum in Warsaw
photo by Ernest Wińczyk
Works by Xawery Dunikowski
Xawery Dunikowski, American Woman II, 1927 (after plaster version of 1916-1920)
property: the National Museum in Warsaw
photo by Ernest Wińczyk
Works by Xawery Dunikowski
Xawery Dunikowski, Maternity, ca. 1927 (after plaster version from before 1904)
property: the National Museum in Warsaw
photo by Ernest Wińczyk
Works by Xawery Dunikowski
Sara Lipska (1882–1973), Portrait of Xawery Dunikowski, 1953
property: the National Museum in Warsaw
photo by Ernest Wińczyk
Works by Xawery Dunikowski
Works by Auguste Rodin
Works by Auguste Rodin
Works by Xawery Dunikowski
Works by Xawery Dunikowski

Honorary Patronage

Cooperation

Patron of the National Museum in Krakow

Sponsor of the Feliks Jasieński Szołayski House

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Partners of the National Museum in Krakow

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