Remarkable Rodin! See the works of famous impressionist artists - MetroFamily Magazine
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Remarkable Rodin! See the works of famous impressionist artists

by Erin Page

Reading Time: 3 minutes 

Our Oklahoma City Museum of Art is truly a gem — and not just because they offer visitors incredible experiences to view and reflect upon remarkable art. What I love most about OKCMOA is the team’s ability to take works or artists that may be intimidating (for any age!) and make them relatable, engaging and approachable. Their newest exhibition is no exception: True Nature: Rodin and the Age of Impressionism features one of the greatest sculptors since the Renaissance and helps visitors connect with the history, art and each other.

The opportunity to view works by Auguste Rodin is no doubt a once-in-a-lifetime experience for many. After all, True Nature, organized by the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, only made stops in Florida and here in OKC before leaving the country for Japan. Outside of this exhibition, Oklahomans would have to travel to Philadelphia or Paris to see works by Rodin.

But it’s the presentation that makes this exhibition truly spectacular and will have kids and adults fully engaged and excited about art and its effect on our world. Here are 5 reasons to make sure your family visits OKCMOA to see True Nature this summer:

  1. In addition to 60 works by Rodin, the exhibition includes art by several dozen of his fellow Impressionists, including Claude Monet, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Camille Pissarro, Edgar Degas and Paul Cézanne. The opportunity to compare and contrast works invites fun conversations, like how Rodin’s highly texturized sculptures mimic the brush strokes of his fellow artists. Plus, learn how Rodin is connected to each piece by the other artists through impactful stories. Ask kids: What are the similarities you see between Rodin’s sculptures and the impressionist paintings? How were the artists using similar techniques in different mediums?
  2. Kids will especially enjoy the section dedicated to Rodins process of casting sculptures in bronze, which includes a touchable version of one of his sculptures. See the step-by-step process he employed, which Dr. Rosie May, director of of curatorial affairs and audience engagement, says helps to demystify the art-making process. Kid visitors will learn both that creating art is hard work and they are capable of creating art, too. Plus, they’ll gain more understanding into why Rodin chose the method of bronze casting and the importance of how light plays into what he was trying to convey through his sculptures. Ask kids: Which step in the process do you think would be the hardest? Could you create a step-by-step process to teach someone how to do something you love to do?
  3. Rodin explored a lot of emotion and physiology through his sculptures, which was a stark  diversion from the methodology of many of his contemporary sculptors. May encourages parents to invite kids to mimic the poses or expressions they see in the sculptures, which helps deepen their understanding of the art and their own emotions. Ask kids: What do you think the person portrayed in this sculpture is feeling? How do you feel when you look at it?
  4. OKCMOA staff will offer family programming throughout the run of the exhibition, including Ask Me” sessions with docents, stroller tours, story times, drop-in art activities and even a high tea.
  5. Always a reason to visit OKCMOA: kids 17 and under get in free!

Because the exhibition is expected to draw crowds, timed tickets will be required and advance reservations are highly recommended. Visit okcmoa.com to reserve yours. True Nature is open through Oct. 22.

Note: Yes, some of the sculptures are nude. We discussed this before we visited.

Photo: Auguste Rodin, Monument to Honoré de Balzac, first modeled 1897, this cast 1967, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Gift of the B. Gerald Cantor Art Foundation, photo © Museum Associates/LACMA

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