Par Françoise Spiekermeier
In 1888, Auguste Rodin offered the Morla Vicuña sculpture to Luisa Lynch, a small sculpture of 28.1 x 30.7 x 18.5 cm depicting a nude woman bent over on a rock and titled Andromeda by the sculptor. Andromeda replaced the order from Carlos Lynch de Morla, a Chilean diplomat in Paris, of his wife’s bust, exhibited at the Salon of 1888, which was such a sensation to the public that the French State proposed to acquire it (The bust is now in the Musée d’Orsay). The generous gesture consisting in yielding to France a very intimate work, was thus saluted by Rodin.
Andromeda was made in five copies, three of which are currently preserved in museums: the Rodin Museum in Philadelphia, the Rodin Museum in Paris, and the National Museum of Fine Arts in Buenos Aires. The fourth has joined a private collection, after a public sale in 2006 in New York where it was acquired for $ 3 million. The fifth, the copy of the Morla, is the most complete in its natural transcription and is, in fact, the second copy made by Rodin in 1887.
While the Rodin Centennial exhibition opens in Paris at the Grand Palais, Stéphane Aubert, Associate Director of Artcurial and Auctioneer exclaims: “Andromede was waiting for us! It is the moving and rare impression that we have had in rediscovering this major work of Rodin, preciously preserved in the same family from generation to generation during all these years « .
Rodin’s art is held in the effect between the finite and the non-finito of the block from which it springs and to which it remains bounded. But, by the soft and sensitive surface of its body, the smooth and shiny surface of its skin, this Andromede is a real emotional bomb.
After Paris, the sculpture will be presented in the European offices of Artcurial in Brussels, Vienna and Milan. It is estimated between 800,000 and 1,2 million euros.
Rodin, the Centennial exhibition, from March 22nd to July 31st, 2017, Galeries Nationales du Grand Palais