Friday, November 19, 2010

Answer - Friday Foto Quiz #18

Yes, this is "The Thinker" by Rodin. If you are good with Wikipedia and Google Maps, you could positively identify the location from the seesaw sign in the background. Scroll down for more.

Originally named "The Poet", the sculpture portrays Dante contemplating his poem about the gates of hell  depicted below at the same location.

These pictures were taken at the Rodin Museum in Philadelphia. There are 10 full size bronze versions of The Thinker in the United States, 2 of them in the bay area at Stanford University and the Legion of Honor in San Francisco.

The museum in Philly had a large collection of hand sculptures. I knew little about bronze sculptures before this visit. The originals were carved in wax which are then used to create molds which in turn were used to cast the hollow bronze statues. A complex series of levers is used to exactly duplicate a sculpture into other sizes. The original wax versions are eventually lost.

The Benjamin Franklin Parkway in Philadelphia hosts a great number of excellent art, history and science museums. Check'um out.

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