Q&A: Does anyone know the process to create the sculpture “The Thinker” by Auguste Rodin?


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Question by : Does anyone know the process to create the sculpture “The Thinker” by Auguste Rodin?
I really need help on knowing the “process” for this sculpture for my art project.

I would also like to know the art elements that was used in to make the sculpture as well.

Best answer:

Answer by Seventex
The “Thinker” (as it’s come to be known) is actually a detail from an unfinished project. So, you could say the process was never complete. It’s a detail from “The Gates of Hell” – there are several figures on it, the one you’re referring to (the most famous one) appears at the center just above the doors, or gates. Another famous element of the work is above that, three nudes standing.

Rodin worked on this for several years (actually, nearly two decades) and it was his curator that convinced him to do the final casting and assembly of the work for the Musee de Paris in 1917. Rodin was never totally satisfied with the pieces he had developed and had only shown the work in pieces (unfinished) prior to that. I suppose that is how the Thinker was first appreciated as a stand-alone work, though that did not appear to be the artist’s intention or concept.

I don’t know if you’re talking about the creative or technical process. There are known to be sketches of the work by Rodin, but there is nothing unusual about that.

The actual process for making the bronze casting would have involved a translation of the sculpture – perhaps originally created in clay, to be recreated in wax so that a set of castings could be made of the form into which molten bronze would be poured melting the wax which then escapes through ventilation holes in the casting.

Once the bronze cools, the casting is removed and the work is touched up (sometimes this can be an extensive, even creative, process) removing the casting marks, seams, and bits of excess bronze, then the work is coated with various finished to provide the desired patina and protect it from the elements.

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