The Rodin Museum in Philadelphia is one of the city’s true gems. This impressive museum boasts the largest collection of works by sculptor Auguste Rodin outside of Paris, France. The museum has recently undergone an extensive $9 million renovation with doors re-opening in July of 2012.
About the Rodin Museum
The intimately-scaled Rodin Museum opened in 1929, nestled between the Free Library of Philadelphia and the Philadelphia Museum of Art’s main building on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. The building is an interesting mix of Beaux-Arts architecture and a formal French garden, creating the perfect atmosphere to take in the sculptures of Rodin. The museum was founded by entrepreneur and philanthropist Jules E. Mastbaum, who gave it to the city as a gift. It drew over 390,000 visitors in its first year, and remains one of the city’s lasting icons today.
The Museum Collection
The Rodin Museum contains over 140 bronzes, marbles and plasters that represent every phase of Rodin’s career. The beautiful outdoor garden is home to a total of eight works, including The Thinker and The Gates of Hell, two of Rodin’s most famous pieces. Other pieces located in the garden include Adam, The Shade, The Age of Bronze, Eve, and The Three Shades.
The museum also includes nearly thirty works that are inspired by The Gates of Hell, towering bronze doors that were inspired by Dante’s Divine Comedy. The Zoe and Dean Pappas Gallery houses several of Rodin’s studies for major public monuments. The northwest gallery focuses on a series of works honoring the writer Honore de Balzac.
Planning Your Visit
The Rodin Museum is located at 2151 Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia, PA 19130. It is open Wednesday through Monday from 10am to 5pm. The museum is closed on Tuesday and on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day and the 4th of July. They operate on normal hours on New Year’s Day, Martin Luther King Jr. Day, President’s Day, Memorial Day, Labor Day and Columbus Day.
Suggested admission is $8 for adults, $6 for seniors over 65, $6 for students and youth ages 13 to 18, and free for children 12 and under. Admission is also free for members of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. These, however, are suggested admission prices. The Rodin Museum is “Pay What You Wish” every day, and the garden is free year round.
Limited metered parking is available on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, N 21st Street and N 22nd Street. Parking is also available at the Philadelphia Museum of Art’s parking garage, which is located across from the main building on Anne d’Harnoncourt Drive. A complementary shuttle service is available between the Philadelphia Museum of Art and the Rodin Museum. The parking garage rates are $12 for the first four hours with $2 for each additional hour. For members, the first hour is free, and it is $8 for the next four hours, and $2 for each additional hour. Parking must be validated in the Museum to receive visitor and member rates.
For more information about the Rodin Museum, please visit their website at http://www.rodinmuseum.org/.