Vladimir Zupansky (1869 -1928)
Poster of the Rodin Exhibition in Prague
H. 158 cm ; W. 84 cm
In May 1902, the Manès Union of Artists, Prague, hosted an exhibition of Rodin’s works in the pavilion built in 1901 by one of its members, Jan Kotera (1871- 1923). A pupil of the Viennese architect, Otto Wagner, Kotera had also mounted the exhibition, following Rodin’s written instructions. The project had commenced in 1898.
Rodin, who had had to attend a dinner given in his honour in London, arrived in Prague via Cologne and Dresden, after the official opening. He was accompanied by his favourite pupil, the sculptor Joseph Maratka (1874-1937), the painter Alfons Mucha (1860-1939) and Rudolph Vacha (born 1860). On 30 May, a banquet was held for him in Prague.
The exhibition, for which a catalogue was published,was advertised by a poster – one of the rare posters to have survived from Rodin’s period – depicting his Balzac (1898). Designed by the painter and poster artist Vladimir Zupansky, its style is characteristic of the Art Nouveau aesthetics prevalent in Vienna, Prague and Berlin at this time.
Rodin’s work was widely known and shown in Germany and Central Europe, before, but especially after, his major retrospective of 1900, owing to the exhibitions organized by artists belonging to the Sezession movement, for whom Rodin epitomized modernity in sculpture.