61
61

PROPERTY FROM A PRIVATE FRENCH COLLECTION

Auguste Rodin
BAISER, 1ÈRE RÉDUCTION
Estimate
Irrevocable Bids
Lots with this symbol indicate that a party has provided Sotheby’s with an irrevocable bid on the lot that will be executed during the sale at a value that ensures that the lot will sell. The irrevocable bidder, who may bid in excess of the irrevocable bid, will be compensated based on the final hammer price in the event he or she is not the successful bidder or may receive a fixed fee in the event he or she is the successful bidder. If the irrevocable bidder is the successful bidder, the fixed fee (if applicable) for providing the irrevocable bid may be netted against the irrevocable bidder’s obligation to pay the full purchase price for the lot and the purchase price reported for the lot shall be net of such fixed fee. If the irrevocable bid is not secured until after the printing of the auction catalogue, a pre-lot announcement will be made indicating that there is an irrevocable bid on the lot. If the irrevocable bidder is advising anyone with respect to the lot, Sotheby’s requires the irrevocable bidder to disclose his or her financial interest in the lot. If an agent is advising you or bidding on your behalf with respect to a lot identified as being subject to an irrevocable bid, you should request that the agent disclose whether or not he or she has a financial interest in the lot.
Guaranteed Property
Guaranteed Property. The seller of lots with this symbol has been guaranteed a minimum price from one auction or a series of auctions. If every lot in a catalogue is guaranteed, the Conditions of Sale will so state and this symbol will not be used for each lot.
1,000,0001,500,000
LOT SOLD. 1,935,000 USD
JUMP TO LOT
61

PROPERTY FROM A PRIVATE FRENCH COLLECTION

Auguste Rodin
BAISER, 1ÈRE RÉDUCTION
Estimate
Irrevocable Bids
Lots with this symbol indicate that a party has provided Sotheby’s with an irrevocable bid on the lot that will be executed during the sale at a value that ensures that the lot will sell. The irrevocable bidder, who may bid in excess of the irrevocable bid, will be compensated based on the final hammer price in the event he or she is not the successful bidder or may receive a fixed fee in the event he or she is the successful bidder. If the irrevocable bidder is the successful bidder, the fixed fee (if applicable) for providing the irrevocable bid may be netted against the irrevocable bidder’s obligation to pay the full purchase price for the lot and the purchase price reported for the lot shall be net of such fixed fee. If the irrevocable bid is not secured until after the printing of the auction catalogue, a pre-lot announcement will be made indicating that there is an irrevocable bid on the lot. If the irrevocable bidder is advising anyone with respect to the lot, Sotheby’s requires the irrevocable bidder to disclose his or her financial interest in the lot. If an agent is advising you or bidding on your behalf with respect to a lot identified as being subject to an irrevocable bid, you should request that the agent disclose whether or not he or she has a financial interest in the lot.
Guaranteed Property
Guaranteed Property. The seller of lots with this symbol has been guaranteed a minimum price from one auction or a series of auctions. If every lot in a catalogue is guaranteed, the Conditions of Sale will so state and this symbol will not be used for each lot.
1,000,0001,500,000
LOT SOLD. 1,935,000 USD
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Impressionist & Modern Art Evening Sale

|
New York

Auguste Rodin
1840 - 1917
BAISER, 1ÈRE RÉDUCTION
Inscribed Rodin and with the foundry mark F. Barbedienne. Fondeur; stamped three times (on the interior)
Bronze
Height: 28 1/8 in.
 71.4 cm
Conceived in 1886, this reduction conceived in 1898; this example cast between 1905 and 1910.
Read Condition Report Read Condition Report

This work will be included in the forthcoming Catalogue Critique de l'oeuvre sculpté d'Auguste Rodin being currently prepared by Galerie Brame & Lorenceau under the direction of Jérôme Le Blay under the archive number 2018-5804B.

Provenance

Georges Vancauwenberghe, France  

Dr. Georges Emile Duval, France (gift from the above in 1913)

Thence by descent 

Literature

Rainer Maria Rilke, Auguste Rodin, London, 1917, illustration of another cast pl. 6

Georges Grappe, Catalogue du Musée Rodin, Paris, 1929, no. 114, illustration of the marble version p. 57

Georges Grappe, Catalogue du Musée Rodin, Paris, 1944, no. 71, illustration of the larger marble version n.p.

Georges Grappe, Le Musée Rodin, Paris, 1947, illustration of the marble version pl. 71

Cécile Goldscheider, Rodin, Paris, 1962, illustration of the marble version p. 49

Bernard Champigneuelle, Rodin, London, 1967, nos. 78-79, illustrations of the marble version pp. 162-63

Robert Descharnes & Jean-François Chabrun, Auguste Rodin, Lausanne, 1967, illustration of the larger marble version p. 131

Ionel Jianou & Cécile Goldscheider, Rodin, Paris, 1967, p. 100, illustrations of the marble version pls. 54-55

Ludwig Goldscheider, Rodin Sculptures, London, 1970, no. 49, illustration of the marble version p. 121

John L. Tancock, The Sculpture of Auguste Rodin, Philadelphia, 1976, illustration of the marble version p. 77

Albert E. Elsen, In Rodin's Studio: A Photographic Record of Sculpture in the Making, Oxford, 1980, illustration of the marble version pls. 108-09 & on the dust jacket

Hélène Pinet, Rodin, sculpteur et les photographes de son temps, Paris, 1985, no. 34, illustration of the marble version p. 46

Nicole Barbier, Marbres de Rodin: Collection de Musée Rodin, Paris, 1987, no. 79, illustration of the marble version p. 185

Pierre Kjellberg, Les Bronzes du XIXe siècle, Paris, 1987, illustration of another cast p. 585

David Finn & Marie Busco, Rodin and his Contemporaries: The Iris & B. Gerald Cantor Collection, New York, 1991, illustrations of another cast pp. 60-61

Albert E. Elsen, Rodin's Art, The Rodin Collection of the Iris & B. Gerald Cantor Center for the Visual Arts at Stanford University, New York, 2003, no. 49, illustrations of another cast pp. 214-15

Antoinette Le Normand-Romain, The Bronzes of Rodin, Catalogue of Works in the Musée Rodin, vol. I, Paris, 2007, illustration of another cast p. 160

Catalogue Note

Rodin’s Baiser has become one of the most recognizable sculptures in the history of art. The work’s pertinence to Rodin's contemporaries was immediate and its continued relevance in today's visual culture has solidified the sculpture's legacy. Though he firmly grounded Baiser in the schema of his planned Le Porte de l’Enfer which was based on Dante’s Divine Comedy, Rodin’s sculpture transcended preceding imagery to create a true masterpiece that continues to transfix contemporary society. Rodin began working on the gates in 1880 following a commission from the French government for a monumental bronze portal that would serve as a centerpiece for the planned national museum of decorative arts. The project sparked a period of intense creativity that occupied Rodin for over twenty years and saw the creation of some of his most important and celebrated individual works. A journalist visiting his studio in 1889 described the scene: "I remember a time when the walls, the floor of the studio, the turntables and the furniture were littered with small female nudes in the contorted poses of passion and despair... With the rapidity of spontaneous creation, a countless host of damned women came into being and writhed in his fingers. Some of them lived for a few hours before being returned to the mass of reworked clay" (quoted in Rodin. Sculptures and Drawing (exhibition catalogue), Hayward Gallery, London, 1986-87, p. 80).

Baiser portrays the ill-fated lovers from Dante's Divine Comedy, Paolo and Francesca, who were murdered by Francesca's husband and Paolo's brother, Gianciotto Malatesta, lord of Rimini, who caught them as they shared their first kiss. Banished to the second circle of hell for their adulterous passion, the two lovers were doomed to spend eternity in an embrace. Among the love stories in Dante's Divine Comedy, this forbidden liaison, so reminiscent of courtly love, had the greatest resonance for a late nineteenth century audience, and was reinterpreted by many artists including Ingres, Delacroix and Alexandre Cabanel.

Baiser was originally intended for the left side of La Porte de l'Enfer, but was never included as Rodin felt the work - being an embodiment of absolute happiness - lacked the tragic mood the project required. Instead he chose to exhibit the sculpture separately at the Galeries Georges Petit and at the Exposition Générale des Beaux-Arts in Brussels, and it quickly became one of Rodin's signature works. The French government commissioned a marble version in 1888, and after the work was exhibited at the Paris Salon that same year to glowing reviews, the Barbedienne foundry cast bronze editions in four different sizes between 1898 and 1918, the largest being 71.4 cm. The present cast was acquired by Dr. Georges Emile Duval in 1913, and has remained in the same family to the present day.

Impressionist & Modern Art Evening Sale

|
New York