PHILADELPHIA (AP and ACNI) – The iconic sculpture The Thinker will be doing its pondering in a different location this summer in Philadelphia.
The massive bronze sculpture is a fixture at the entrance of the city’s Rodin Museum. But since last Friday it has been on display at the Philadelphia Museum of Art as its permanent home undergoes renovations.
The Rodin Museum’s limestone facade is currently being restored and two new flights of limestone steps leading to the museum entrance are being replaced with identical versions coming from France.
The Thinker is also getting a fresh application of a protective coating. Museum officials say the work is necessary to clean the pollution and grime that have built up over the past 80 years.
There are three originals of Rodin’s The Thinker (1880-1882), although several others were cast later.
At one time, visitors to Philadelphia’s Rodin Museum entering the institution passed through a cast of The Gates of Hell. This massive 18ft.-tall bronze doorway was originally created for the Museum of Decorative Arts (which was to have been located in Paris but never came into existence). Rodin sculpted more than 100 figures for these doors from 1880 until his death in 1917. This casting is one of the three originals; several others have been made since. Several of Rodin’s most famous works, including The Thinker, are actually studies for these doors which were later expanded into separate works.
Auction Central News International contributed to this report. Copyright 2009 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
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