French Friday – Musee Rodin

Rodin's sculpture "The Three Shades"

It’s French Friday! How about a quick visit to the Musee Rodin?

Le Penseur, The Thinker. Rodin
Le Penseur (The Thinker in the garden of the Musee Rodin, Paris

Literally a stone’s throw from les Invalides is the Musee Rodin. After venerating (or execrating) Napoleon in his tomb it is well worth the brief walk to check out the museum, for it is Rodin’s actual residence (and a rather splendid one it is) and has a charming garden filled with his sculpture.

Rodin's sculpture "The Three Shades"
“The Three Shades” with a glimpse of the Thinker in the background.

Within his impressive “hotel” you will find an array of smaller works, sketches and developmental pieces as well as a surprising collection of artworks including a marvellous Van Gogh and a few Munches.

Rodin Burghers of Calais Sculpture
“The Burghers of Calais” These tormented figures make a startling group in the garden

To see the thinker with the gold dome of Les Invalides behind or the “Gates of Hell” in all its massive horror is a unique experience. This is a fascinating work which took Rodin an immense amount of time to create. It was commissioned to be the entrance to a new Parisian decorative arts museum. After all the work of making it, the museum never eventuated. If you want to know some fascinating facts about the Thinker and its link to the door (It was part of the original design) then check out this really interesting link. “12 Things you didn’t know about The Thinker”

The Gates of Hell by Rodin in the Musee Rodin Paris
Rodin’s “The Gates of Hell” a nightmare to create…and all for nothing.
Rodin, The Thinker, Le Penseur
The wonderful stillness and beauty of the scene is something I will never forget.


I was surprised how few people visited it even though we were there in April on a lovely day. I would recommend you add it to your itinerary next time you find yourself in Paris.

Bon weekend mes amies!


Musee Rodin Paris
Rodin’s impressive residence showing how well a successful sculptor could do for themselves. The interior is filled with examples of his work as well as other spectacular artworks
Rodin Sculpture
Another sculpture in the gardens as the first of the spring flowers burst forth.


  1. I visited in the mid-seventies while on a year-long trip to Europe during college. I don’t remember much about the museum, other than loving it, except that you weren’t supposed to touch anything and his sculptures beg to be touched!


    Liked by 1 person

    1. They are certainly wonderfully “tactile” sculptures for sure. I can’t remember seeing “do not touch” but I am sure someone would magically appear to say “sil vous plait!” sternly if I had. 🙂


          1. So we have been lead to believe. Mind you, my father is English and they are terribly proper. They don’t touch anything.


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