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Musée Rodin

The gardens and façade of the Rodin Museum in Paris.
Photo by Renata Haidle.

Musée Rodin

Charming Paris Museum & Garden with Exquisite Sculptures

77 Rue de Varenne, 75007 Paris

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What is there to say about Auguste Rodin that hasn’t already been said?

He was extremely talented, a prolific artist, and an innovator – considered by many to be the founder of modern sculpture. He created over 6,000 sculptures and more than 10,000 drawings during the course of his lifetime. He collected thousands of photographs, paintings, and ceramics.

What better place to get acquainted with his legacy than the house where he lived and worked, a house that eventually became his eponymous museum?

Exterior of the Rodin Museum in Paris with The Thinker sculpture visible in the garden.
The Musée Rodin in Paris is beautiful both inside and out, displaying many of the sculptor’s most celebrated works within its walls and in its garden. Photo © Renata Haidle.

An unmissable destination in Paris, located at 77 Rue de Varenne in the 7th Arrondissement, Musée Rodin is home to masterpieces such as The Kiss and The Thinker (originally titled The Poet, after Dante Alighieri) – both world-renowned artworks which surely need no introduction.

The Cathedral, a joining of two right hands, was initially titled The Ark of the Covenant and is part of a series that also includes The Hand of God, The Hand of the Devil, and Hands of Lovers.

The Kiss by Auguste Rodin
The Kiss by Auguste Rodin on display in Paris’s Musée Rodin. Photo © Renata Haidle.

One of my personal favorites is Danaïd, a moving depiction of a mythological character who is condemned to perpetually perform an impossible task as punishment for a horrible crime. Its marble-carved lines are feminine and gentle, yet painfully hardened by the woman’s curse of forever attempting a futile endeavor.

Another notable work is The Three Shades, a reference to the souls of the damned in Dante’s Inferno who stand at the Gates of Hell. The poignancy of their despair is palpable, expressed in the curvature of the bodies and the almost horizontal bent in their necks. 

The Three Shades statue by Rodin in the gardens of the Rodin museum in Paris.
The Three Shades in the garden of the Musée Rodin in Paris. Photo © Renata Haidle.

Various drawings, prints and paintings, photographs and ceramics, are also on display as well as some ancient Greek, Roman and Egyptian sculptures. These pieces are part of Rodin’s personal collection, some artworks he received as gifts, others he purchased directly. 

The museum’s collections also feature the works of other artists, including those of Camille Claudel, Rodin’s one-time muse and passionate lover, who was also an accomplished artist in her own right.

Outside, the sizeable gardens spread over three hectares (over 7 acres), offering a chance for respite and recollection among the fragrant rose bushes that cover the grounds. Cone-shaped evergreens dot the landscape. In the midst of Parisian tumult, it’s a welcome oasis of calm, the perfect place to soak up the art of a genius while surrounded by the unfailing beauty of nature.

Gardens of the Rodin Museum
The Thinker in the garden of the Musée Rodin, with the golden dome of nearby Les Invalides in the background. Photo © Renata Haidle.

Open every day but Monday, from 10am–6:30pm. Last entry at 5:30pm. Tickets 15€ for adults, 9€ for non-EU members ages 18–25, free for EU members 25 and under. Free for all under 18.

Ready to continue your cultural outing? Visit one of these top small art museums in Paris.

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  • 77 Rue de Varenne
  • 75007 Paris

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