Auguste Rodin (1840 -1917)
Two Woman Embracing
Pencil and watercolour on paper
H. 32 cm ; W. 24 cm
The theme of Sapphic love frequently recurred in the drawings of Rodin, who often employed several models at the same time.
The impetuosity and accuracy of the movement must have been captured spontaneously, then transferred onto another sheet, since Rodin was in the habit of tracing his initial drawing to obtain another, more refined one. This was the process used in the present drawing, where the contour bears no sign of error or correction. The magnificently controlled, unbroken line defines and models the forms, which have become timeless, which are not even concealed by the usual daub of pale ochre wash. The only colours are in the splotch of blue watercolour on the folds of the drapery of the woman on the left and the dabs of yellow ochre highlighting the hair.
This work epitomizes the duality between the immediacy of real facts and the search for style in Rodin’s drawings. It is also exceptional because of the dedication:
à ma grande amie
Judith Cladel, the sculptor’s unfailing supporter, was the first person to classify the Musée Rodin’s large collection of drawings.