Simonis & Buunk Kunsthandel
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Auguste Rodin (1840-1917), Christ and Mary Magdalene, marble
110 x 94 cm, signed l.r. on the base and executed ca. 1908-1909
EDE – On Good Friday, the day when Christians commemorate the death of Jesus on the cross, a monumental work by the renowned French sculptor Auguste Rodin (1840-1917) will be shown for the first time at Simonis & Buunk Fine Art, Ede. ‘Le Christ et la Madeleine’, depicting the crucified Christ clasped in the arms of a consoling Mary Magdalene, has never previously been shown to the Dutch public. Certain prominent theologians and clergymen have been invited to describe the mystery of the sculpture. At about one metre high, the imposing, marble work originates from the collection of a well-known international Dutch entrepreneur.
‘Le Christ et la Madeleine’ is the only surviving sculpture of Christ in Rodin’s oeuvre. The representation is moving: Mary Magdalene, with her head bowed over the heart of a crucified and exhausted Christ. The manner in which the entwined figures have been partly hewn out of the marble block adds emphasis to the dramatic moment. The entire tragedy of condemnation, suffering, crucifixion and then comes together in this one majestic work. On the one hand, the sensually rendered body of Mary Magdalene by Rodin leads away from the heavy and tragic subject matter.
Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum, Madrid
There are two examples of ‘Le Christ et la Madeleine’ made in marble, the first of which was commissioned by the steel magnate and art collector August Thyssen (1842-1926). This slightly smaller version is now in the Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza, Madrid. Baron Thyssen developed a friendship with Auguste Rodin, which led in 1905 to a commission for a series of seven marble sculptures, all of which can be seen in the museum. ‘Le Christ et la Madeleine’ is the only work of the series which at Thyssen’s request following his death was placed at the head of his coffin.
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For factual information about the sculpture please contact Frank Buunk, 0318-652888, firstname.lastname@example.org
For information on the example at the Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza: http://www.museothyssen.org/en/thyssen/ficha_obra/579
Auguste Rodin (1840-1917), ‘Le Christ et la Madeleine’, marble, height 113 cm, signed ca. 1908-1909.