Temporary exhibitions

Rodin/Dunikowski. Visions of Women


24.05  18.09.2016 

Opening: 22.05.2016 at 6 p.m. 


The exhibtion is organised with the collaboration of the Paris Musée Rodin and the National Museum in Kraków. "Rodin/Dunikowski. Visions of Women" will be presented in National Museum in Kraków from 7.10.2016 until 15.01.2017.







The purpose of the exhibition is to present how significant in the art of Auguste Rodin and Xawery Dunikowski, the two most important sculptors in the history of French and Polish art, were women. Tracing the images of women created by the two artists will help us notice the proximity in the approach and art of these two famous sculptors. At the exhibition, in addition to the works by Rodin and Dunikowski, we will also see sculpture portraits of the artists made by sculptresses, who, at some period of time, had personal relationships with them: Camille Claudel and Sara Lipska, respectively. The exhibition will be the first attempt ever at juxtaposing the art of the two sculptors and the first exhibition of Rodin’s works in Poland.


What ties these two artists together is their philosophy of life and narcissistic focus on their own needs and aspirations. Both had the sense of a special quality of their talent and personality, while they understood art as mission, a sort of priesthood. In many works by the sculptors, however, we can see the features of female partners’ faces. Rose Beuret and Camille Claudel were important in Auguste Rodin’s life. The former one, a dressmaker by trade, Rodin met while working on the pediment of the Gobelins theatre. There and then began a relationship that lasted for almost 53 years. In 1866 their son, whom Rodin accepted as his son only towards the end of his life, was born, and several days before Rose died, Rodin married her. Camille turned up in the artist’s working studio as a young, 19-year-old student. Their relationship turned into a lasting affair and its end brought about the sculptress’s mental breakdown. In the aftermath of this, Claudel spent the rest of her life, over thirty years, in a mental institution without a possibility of sculpting.

The story of Xawery Dunikowski and Sara Lipska, the most important woman in his life, also began as a master-student relation. In 1904 Sara started her studies at the School of Fine Arts in Warsaw, where Dunikowski was at that time a young, 29-year-old sculpture professor. In a result of their affair, a child was born, whom, contrary to Rodin, Dunikowski accepted at its birth and gave it his surname. It seems symptomatic that Rodin’s son had an identical name as his father – Auguste, while Dunikowski’s daughter used her second name – Xawera.



Curator: Ewa Ziembińska
Architecture of the exhibition: Marcin Kwietowicz
Graphic design: Jakub Jezierski, Jurek Gruchot
Production: Ewa Kozik
Coordination: Agnieszka Gizińska

Media partners: Gazeta Co Jest Grane 24, Gazeta Wyborcza, TVP Kultura, Radio RFM