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All year round, two audioguides for family visits invite parents and children to discover the gardens and permanent collection with the help of an interactive plan.
How can children learn to appreciate sculpture while having fun, at the same time as parents broaden their own knowledge? Armed with an interactive plan enabling people to find their way around the museum easily, each participant has a large pen which, when pointed at the images, sets off a commentary and leads the family from one work to the next. Two different guides are available: “Rodin and his Garden” focuses on the grounds; “In Search of Rodin” conducts visitors through the Hôtel Biron.
Admission: Family ticket (2 adults and children under 18): € 10
Audioguide rental: For an audioguided visit comprising an Audiopen© and a plan: ¤ 3 for an adult and a child; € 1.5 per extra device.
Recommended age: 6-12. The audioguides are available in French or English.
The museum regularly makes new acquisitions with a view to building up an exhaustive collection of both works and documents by filling in some of the gaps.
Last June, the museum made a major acquisition relevant to the history of the Hôtel Biron, a purchase that is part of a long and complex scheme to reconstruct the original interior decoration. Built for Abraham Peyrenc de Moras by Jean Aubert, the architect who designed the Great Stables at the Château of Chantilly, the townhouse was decorated with a series of eighteen paintings, commissioned from François Lemoyne (1688-1737), First Painter to the King, circa 1729. Shortly afterwards, Lemoyne commenced the ceiling painting in the Hercules Room, at the Château of Versailles. In 1820, the Hôtel Biron underwent a dramatic transformation after the estate was purchased by the nuns of the Society of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, who sold the decorative elements for both financial and moral reasons.
The recent acquisition is one of four overdoor paintings illustrating The Four Times of Day – Morning, Midday, Evening and Night – which adorned the central drawing room, the formal reception room overlooking the garden between the two ground-floor apartments. While Midday or Venus and the Graces showing Cupid the Ardour of his Arrows was bought by the museum in 1985, the latest purchase with a similar use of vivid colour is Evening or Diana Returning from the Hunt (irregular-shaped oil on canvas mounted in a rectangle, 168 x 113.5 cm).
Seated on the right, Diana turns towards three other women, her hunting companions, who are showing her a dead doe. Diana points her right finger at their prize; the anxious faces of the young nymphs might indicate that the goddess disapproves of their act, for they have just killed a doe instead of a stag.
This exceptional acquisition, preempted and purchased with the help of France’s national heritage fund, will be on view in the museum amidst the wood panelling and other paintings previously purchased and remounted in the oval cabinets, such as The Labours of Penelope, in 1989, and Hercules delivering Hesione, reinstalled thanks to an exchange policy with the City of Nancy set up in 1998.