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Auguste Rodinby Rainer Maria Rilke
"Up close and personal, Rilke had the opportunity to observe Rodin's immense artistic dedication — but also his tendency to get more than professionally involved with the women who modeled nude for him. Rilke's observations are wonderfully astute....'Writers work with words, sculptors with actions,' was a Renaissance motto. For readers interested in either field of endeavor, this volume is a treat." Ruth Walker, Christian Science Monitor (read the entire Christian Science Monitor review)
Synopses & Reviews
Sculptor Auguste Rodin once wrote that "one has only to look at a human face to find a soul, no feature deceives; hypocrisy is as transparent as sincerity. The inclining of the brow, the least furrowing of a look may reveal the secrets of the heart." Rodin was fortunate to have as his secretary Rainer Maria Rilke, one of the most sensitive poets of our time. These essays discussing Rodin's work and development as an artist are as revealing of Rilke as they are of his subject. Written in 1903 and 1907, these meditations mark the entry of the poet into the world of letters. The book sheds light on the profound psychic connection between the two great artists, both masters of giving life to the invisible within the visible, concerned with "the unnoticed, the small, the concealed...with the profound and surprising unrest of living things." Over a dozen reproductions of Rodin's little known water-colors and drawings will accompany the essay.
Book News Annotation:
This volume presents English translations of two pieces by Rainer Maria Rilke discussing the work of Auguste Rodin. Written in 1902 and 1907, the essays explore Rodin's working habits, his understanding of the human body, and the development of his art. The volume also features an introductory essay by William Gass (author of Reading Rilke) and arresting color photographs of Rodin's sculptures.
Annotation ©2004 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
Rilke's lyrical meditation on Rodin's work, art, and what it means to be an artist.
Sculptor Auguste Rodin was fortunate to have his secretary Rainer Maria Rilke, one of the most sensitive poets of our time. These two pieces discussing Rodin¢s work and development as an artist are as revealing of Rilke as they are of his subject. Written in 1902 and 1907, these essays mark the entry of the poet into the world of letters. Rilke¢s description of Rodin reveals the profound psychic connection between the two great artists, both masters of giving visible life to the invisible. Michael Eastman¢ evocative photographs of Rodin¢s sculptures shed light on both Rodin¢s art and Rilke¢s thoughts and catapult them into the 21st century.
About the Author
Rainer Maria Rilke, born in Prague in 1875, is arguably the greatest German poet since Goethe. His major works include his Duino Elegies, The Sonnets to Orpheus, The Notebooks of Malte Laurids Brigge, The Book of Hours, and Letters to a Young Poet.
Daniel Slager (Translator) is an editor at Harcourt and a contributing editor to Grand Street. His translations of texts by Bertolt Brecht, Franz Kafka, and Heiner Muller have been widely acclaimed, and his renderings of Durs Grunbein, Marcel Beyer, Felicitas Hoppe, and Terezia Mora have marked these authors' first publications in the U.S.
William Gass (Introduction) is the author of four novels and five books of essays. He has been the recipient of grants from the Rockefeller, Lannan, and Guggenheim foundations. He has received two National Book Critics Circle Awards for Criticism. Gass lives in St. Louis where he is the Director of the International Writers Center.
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