Rodin subject of art programs

Published 6:58 pm Saturday, February 13, 2016

Jeffrey Allison, Paul Mellon Collection Educator at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, will explore the life and work of Auguste Rodin at a presentation at Lake Prince Woods retirement community at 7 p.m. Thursday.

The Suffolk Art Gallery and Suffolk Art League are partners with Lake Prince Woods in the presentation, which is free and open to the public.

The lecture is offered in connection with the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts major exhibition, “Rodin: Evolution of a Genius,” which runs through March 13.

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“Rodin’s life really is that of the modern artist,” Allison said. “He was born into a working class family, and although he showed great promise, he was rejected by the official academies. He worked as an ornamental sculptor before achieving great fame. Now viewed as the father of modern sculpture, his works on paper, in plaster, marble, and bronze stripped away references to classical myth and transformed simple human moments into high art.”

Rodin is known at the greatest sculptor of the 19th and early 20th centuries and revitalized the language of sculpture with his passion for the creative act.

In his lecture, Allison will explore Rodin’s life, his work and his relationships. Included will be a focus on his relationship with Camille Claudel and discussion of her own artworks and tragic life story.

Allison is the Paul Mellon Collection educator and manager of statewide programs and exhibitions at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, as well as a professional photographer.

For more information about the Feb. 18 lecture, contact Susan Stone at 923-5511.

The Suffolk Gallery and Suffolk Art League have two other Rodin events planned. On Saturday, Feb. 20, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., art instructor Toni Merrill will present “Plaster Carving Inspired by Rodin” at the Suffolk Art Gallery, 118 Bosley Ave.

Participants will learn to sculpt plaster, a favorite medium Rodin. The class is for ages 14 to adult, and the registration fee is $50 for SAL members, $60 for non-members. All materials and tools included are included, and registration is required.

On March 10, there will be a bus excursion to the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts to view the Rodin exhibition. Participants will leave from the Suffolk Art Gallery at 8:45 a.m. and return by 5 p.m.

Registration is $25 and includes the exhibition ticket and transportation to and from the Virginia Museum. Register at or call the Suffolk Art Gallery at 514-7284.