Henry Becque. Drypoint. 1885. National Gallery of Art
Though August Rodin is generally remembered a prolific sculptor, he also created a number of drawings and prints, including drypoint and lithography. While some of his drawings were made as preparatory studies for his sculptures, he also made a number over fifty portraits. Rodin is known for his modernist approach, often turning away from traditional approaches taught at the Academy.
In 1881, Rodin was introduced to printmaking by Alphonse Legros, a French artist living in London. Rodin proceeded to produce drypoint prints as well as engravings. Like many of the artists of his time, he was influenced by Japanese print collections.
Victor Hugo. Drypoint. 1884
Victor Hugo, De Face. Drypoint. 1886
Victor Hugo. 4th State, Drypoint, 1884.
A number of Rodon’s watercolors were also produced as pochoirs and off-set lithographs. These prints often depict nudes or dancers.
Nude. Pochoir, after a watercolor. Printed in 1944
Rodin’s reputation really took off in 1900, with several commissions in Europe and America. Several wealthy industrialists purchased his work and invited him to display his sculptures at the French Pavilion at the Chicago World Fair.