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Auguste Rodin (1840-1917)
Auguste Rodin (1840-1917)

Eternal printemps, second état, 2ème réduction

Details
Auguste Rodin (1840-1917)
Eternal printemps, second état, 2ème réduction
signed 'Rodin' (on the right side); inscribed with foundry mark 'F. BARBEDIENNE. Fondeur.' (on the left side); stamped with chaser's mark 'M' (on the rim of the underside)
bronze with brown and green patina
Height: 20 5/8 in. (51.5 cm.)
Length: 26 ½ in. (67.3 cm.)
Conceived in 1884; this bronze version cast between 1905-1910
Provenance
Anon. sale, Christie's, New York, 16 May 1985, lot 322.
Private collection, Florida (acquired at the above sale); sale, Christie's, New York, 6 November 2013, lot 342.
Acquired at the above sale by the present owner.
Literature
L. Maillard, Etudes sur quelques artistes originaux, Auguste Rodin, Paris, 1899, pp. 121-122 (marble version illustrated, pl. 16).
G. Grappe, Catalogue du Musée Rodin, Paris, 1927, p. 42, nos. 69-70 (plaster and another version illustrated).
G. Grappe, Le Musée Rodin, Paris, 1944, p. 141, no. 56 (marble version illustrated).
R. Descharnes and J.-F. Chabrun, Auguste Rodin, Lausanne, 1967, p. 135 (another cast illustrated, p. 134).
I. Jianou and C. Goldscheider, Rodin, Paris, 1967, p. 96 (another cast illustrated, pls. 56-57).
J.L. Tancock, The Sculpture of Auguste Rodin, Philadelphia, 1976, pp. 241-247, no. 32 (another cast illustrated, p. 243, no. 32b; marble version and another version illustrated, pp. 242 and 246).
D. Finn and M. Busco, Rodin and His Contemporaries, The Iris & B. Gerald Cantor Collection, New York, 1991, pp. 227 and 238 (another version illustrated, p. 227).
A.E. Elsen, Rodin's Art, The Rodin Collection of the Iris & B. Gerald Cantor Center for Visual Arts at Stanford University, New York, 2003, pp. 494-497, no. 148 (another cast illustrated, pp. 494-495, fig. 413; another version illustrated, p. 496, fig. 414).
A. Le Normand-Romain, The Bronzes of Rodin, Catalogue of Works in the Musée Rodin, Paris, 2007, vol. I, p. 332, no. S. 2473 (another cast illustrated; marble version illustrated, p. 336, fig. 4).
Exhibited
New Orleans Museum of Art, Sculpture, 1850-1965 from New Orleans Collections, April-September 1993.

Brought to you by

David Kleiweg de Zwaan
David Kleiweg de Zwaan

Lot Essay

This work will be included in the forthcoming Auguste Rodin catalogue critique de l'oeuvre sculpté currently being prepared by the Comité Auguste Rodin at Galerie Brame et Lorenceau under the direction of Jérôme Le Blay under the archive number 2013-4226B.

L'éternel printemps is one of Rodin's most popular compositions and one of the sculptor's greatest commercial successes. Also titled Zéphyr et la Terre and Cupidon et Psyché (there are small Cupid's wings on the back of the male figure), it was exhibited at the Salon of 1897. It was originally intended as a figural grouping for La porte de l'Enfer, but as the tone of the commission evolved into a more tragic representation, the amorous couple was not included in the final version. As with many of his great figural groupings, Rodin developed the characters from earlier works. The female figure is based on Torse d'Adèle, which appears on the top left corner of the tympanum of La porte de l'Enfer.
The dynamic arrangement of the bodies is characteristic of Rodin's innovative treatment of figures at this time. Animated by the dazzling play of light on the surface and the sweeping upward movement of the man, the couple seems ready to take flight. In fact, the man's back shows traces of wings that identify him as Cupid. The female figure is leaning against the tree-like formation behind her and Rodin deliberately preserves the enigma of whether or not she has indeed emerged from it. It is unsurprising that collectors have always been attracted to the potent combination of physical lyricism and romanticism that defines this work.

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