I Twitter!

Tuesday, 10 February 2009

Happily Ever After (not!) Camille Claudel Continued

Today, I just want to complete the tale of Camille Claudel, artist, sculptress, Rodin's Muse, and one of my heroines, if that's okay with you?

Confession time here, I read literature and learned art history while at school, and wondered exactly what it took to be an artist's muse, his inspiration... I day-dreamed of becoming a muse, with no chance whatsoever of experiencing at first hand what it might feel like.

Well, I guess, the closest I came once, was meeting an artist in Cumbria. He was a friend of my OH's cousin, and worked part-time in industry, while earning part of his crust selling his paintings.

He was reasonably well established and his canvases were, well... Interesting.

Cumbria, you say' All those wind-whipped, fluffy sheep, the dramatic, rolling hills, the lush greenery, the cavernous lakes, the pendant mists...

This chap painted Mexican scenes: Men in colourful sombreros and multi-layered ponchos... Nice!

He got a glint in his eye when we were discussing Paul Klee and modern art, in fact, he finally got me to appreciate modern art, and that was some task, I can tell you!

It must have been my Viva Zapata moustachio he was interested in! Can't have been anything else! viva zapata Pictures, Images and Photos

Camille was able to break free of the shadow of the famous sculptor with her later works, influenced by Japanese art, and Art Nouveau, in particular, the onyx and bronze Wave (La Vague 1897) shows us a group of women figures, holding hands in a circle before the towering Tsunami style wave...
Photobucket

Similarly, Les Causeuses, is a tiny sculpture, showing a group of women, again in bronze, enrapt in conversation, oblivious to their surroundings, chattering and gossiping away, as only (perhaps) women and gay men can do!

However, from 1905 onwards, Camille began to exhibit odd behaviours, odd even for a Bohemian artist. She went on to destroy some of her art, send mischievous letters and drawings to Rodin and Rose Beuret, and I believe other important figures in the art world, perhaps also the press...

Photobucket Camille became unreliable, she probably drank too much, as she likely attempted to self-medicate against the evils of the world as she perceived them... She continued to rattle around her workshop, accusing Rodin of stealing her ideas and of leading a conspiracy to kill her.

When Camille's beloved father, who had continued to bankroll her career, died in March 1913, she was not told of his death, and on 10 March 1913, she was admitted to a psychiatric hospital, under the signatures of her brother and a doctor. A later diagnosis of her ills, describes her suffering from, " a systematic persecution delirium mostly based upon false interpretations and imagination". (Wiki).

It may be that committing her to an asylum was the best thing for Camille; It may also have been a question of her socially aware and influential family finding it easier to have their vagabond genius child sequestered away, out of harm's way... as her brother's art, influence and position in French society grew Did Rodin himself have anything to do with her being hidden away from view? Who really can tell?

Photobucket

The facts remain that for a time, "the press accused her family of committing a sculptor of genius, and her mother forbade her to receive mail from anyone other than her brother. The hospital staff regularly proposed to her family that Claudel be released, but her mother adamantly refused each time. On 1 June 1920, her physician sent a letter advising her mother to try to reintegrate her daughter into the family environment. Nothing came of this".
In 1929 Jessie Lipscomb visited her, and her brother called in every few years...

Photobucket Camille Claudel died on 19 October 1943, after having lived 30 years in the asylum at Montfavet without a visit from her mother or sister. Her body lies at Monfavet.

What remains is her very personal, intimate and spell-binding art.

You can see it yourself at the Musee Rodin (formerly Hotel Biron), in Paris. It is well worth a visit of a few hours, and the gardens of the house on a summer's day are very welcoming.

Rodin gave his studios for a museum to the state before his death, and continued to work there rent-free as a result. Camille may even have stayed with him there, I'm not certain without consulting the book I have about her, written in French by her relation... A great-grand-niece, or something of that ilk...
Photobucket There is also a film of Camille's life - It is beautifully acted, with Isabelle Adjani and the inimitable Depardieu, not without its own fans, it also has its detractors, in terms of possible artistic licence. Once again, where are the experts? What is real, and what is fiction, when we talk about heroism and beauty?

One thing is certain, whatever the tragedy of her life, love and fate, Camille's art tells us all that we would ever wish to know about her...

Photobucket “My very dearest down on both knees before your beautiful body which I embrace.” Letter from Rodin to Camille Claudel (end of 1884 - beginning of 1885).

Photobucket “A superb brow above magnificent eyes of that rare blue so seldom encountered outside the covers of a novel,” Paul observed in 1951.

Photobucket And Rodin wrote, “With regard to the Hôtel Biron, nothing is settled yet. The idea of including some sculptures by Mlle Say [a phonetic pseudonym for Camille Claudel, Mademoiselle C., based on the French pronunciation of “c”] would please me very much. This house is quite small and I don’t know how the rooms will be arranged. There could be a few buildings for her and for me.”

Photobucket In Rodin's own words, "I invent nothing, I rediscover".

"The artist must create a spark before he can make a fire and before art is born, the artist must be ready to be consumed by the fire of his own creation".
rodin Pictures, Images and Photos

"To the artist there is never anything ugly in nature".

ducktape

And finally, while I was typing this on Monday, I experienced the serendipity of listening to Bette Midler on a UK TV chat show, singing Wind Beneath My Wings, with its lyrics, "Did you ever know that you're my hero..?"

So dedicated to all our heroes, I offer up a version of Bette singing that lovely song on her own show, "Bette". She is accompanied on the piano by the fabulously talented British actor, James Dreyfus.

The clip I saw of Bette might not ever make it to Youtube, so this might serve to raise a smile with you today - The quality is not great, but the sound is okay.

I hope you enjoy it after a couple of days of seriousness about all our heroes and heroines here!

16 comments:

david mcmahon said...

We all need a muse.

Diane said...

That was lovely. I will definitely visit the museum in Paris when I get there and I'm going to look for the movie, too.

CLAY said...

Splendid piece--oh! how you will bleed for your art...I admire you for this one Woman. Splendid.

Meredith Teagarden(The Things we Carried) said...

Thgis was such as sad post. the pasrt abiout her mother and sister NEVER visiting or bringing her home...

Meredith Teagarden(The Things we Carried) said...

Oh dear, sorry about all the typos above. The art is haunting once i read the story!

Kate Coveny Hood said...

I love the idea of a muse. But I think I'd rather have one than be one.

auntiegwen said...

I love that museum, I could happily go back time and time again. xx

jinksy said...

The two hands and arms never coming together is very powerful image that matches the story exactly.

Cynthia said...

I used to ponder about that question, What would it be like to be someone's muse...thank God I'm over that...I mean in the way that Camille and Rodin were involved...breaking free of his shadow was much needed and allowed for her own "God-light Sky" to show. (You know how the sun breaks through the clouds? I've read that described as Godlight by photographers.) You dear, are quite the writer...so much information! Thanks for having time to visit my Oasis in Puerto Rico. I really don't know how you do it. <3

Mom of Three said...

As a writer who functions much better on Prozac, but has had her creativity abrogated by the drug as well, I wonder how many great works won't get made now that we've been medicated into happiness?

On the other hand, without it, I would surely have weighted my coat pockets with pebbles long before now, and waded into the river.

mouse (aka kimy) said...

unfortunately the time I visited the musee rodin most of cc's sculptures were out on loan for a traveling exhibition. she was brilliant and yet had such a tragic life.... I need to watch that movie again....it was very well done

Dusty Spider said...

Just popped in to say there's an award for you over at my place. xx

A Woman Of No Importance said...

There I was out catching up with reading blogs, rather than obsessively writing, and there you were here making comments!

david mcmahon: Perhaps you could tell us more about your creative muse, one day, David - What keeps you buoyant and energetically creative and artistic - I would love that!

Diane: Don't be like me, and visit when Camille's work is out on tour - I was horribly disappointed on my last visit, as a result - Gobsmacked, in fact - I had to just walk around the rooms feeling her energies - That sounds mad, but I felt it was creepy without the presence of her art - It is so cosy and intimate - Very feminine...

CLAY: True, true... And, like David, I would love you to explore your muse, Clay - is it your grandpa?

Meredith Teagarden(The Things we Carried): I agree, hers is a very touching and sad story... I just wanted others to hold her a little in their hearts too, if that were possible... I know you will understand x

Kate Coveny Hood: I think I would agree, but the romance of being a muse appealed to me much earlier - We always want what we cannot have, I guess!

Auntiegwen: I am glad you have shared the experience too xxx

jinksy: Believe it or not, I added in that sculpture, which I think is Rodin's, because the original art photo, a sculpture belonging to Camille, got rejected by the system - How thoughtful and insightful you are - That is so true!

Cynthia: Your site is like an oasis, in itself - I love it there, and you write so much from the heart, and from the spirit, and you must continue to do so as candidly and as beautifully...please?

Mom of Three: Welcome along! I think we have always had panaceas to support the nervous system - Opium and laudanum were widely available, you know, and there was still creativity - And so you will revive in time, I feel so strongly - I think reality TV is doing more to medicate the population, and not in a positive way - That is just my opinion, 'though...

I always feel Virginia's river passing was such a loss.

mouse (aka kimy): Same thing happened to me - Perhaps we were there at the same time! I hadn't realised that her art was increasingly recognised in her own right...

The movie, if I remember rightly, was the spark that set me off in search of Camille too... Although I had always had an interest in Rodin, but much of her backstory only emerged in the late Twentieth Century.

Dusty Spider: You ticklish feather duster, you! I am coming right over now - I hope you are on guard with your dusty spiders - I have some humdingers to rival them in my home, I think! You are more than kind, my flicky friend! xxx

Scriptor Senex said...

I love the hands image - it's not one I've seen before. As Jinsky commented, it is very powerful and appropriate.

ed said...

情趣用品,情趣,A片,AIO,AV,AV女優,A漫,免費A片,AIO交友愛情館,愛情公寓,情色,情色貼圖,色情小說,情色小說,情色文學,色情,寄情築園小遊戲,色情遊戲,嘟嘟情人色網,一葉情貼圖片區,情色論壇,色情影片,微風成人,嘟嘟成人網,成人,18成人,成人影城,成人圖片區,成人圖片,成人貼圖,UT聊天室,聊天室,豆豆聊天室,哈啦聊天室,尋夢園聊天室,聊天室尋夢園,視訊聊天室,視訊聊天

麻將,台灣彩卷,六合彩開獎號碼,運動彩卷,六合彩,線上遊戲,矽谷麻將,明星3缺一,橘子町,麻將大悶鍋,台客麻將,公博,game,,中華職棒,麗的線上小遊戲,國士無雙麻將,麻將館,賭博遊戲,威力彩,威力彩開獎號碼,龍龍運動網,史萊姆,史萊姆好玩遊戲,史萊姆第一個家,史萊姆好玩遊戲區,樂透彩開獎號碼,遊戲天堂,好玩遊戲,遊戲基地,無料遊戲王,好玩遊戲區,麻將遊戲,好玩遊戲區,小遊戲,遊戲區,電玩快打,cs online情趣用品,情趣,情趣商品,A片,AIO交友愛情館,AIOAV女優,AV,A漫,免費A片,本土自拍,自拍,愛情公寓,情色,情色貼圖,色情小說,情色小說,情色文學,色情,寄情築園小遊戲,色情遊戲,色情影片,情色網,色情網站,微風成人區,微風成人,嘟嘟成人網,成人,18成人,成人影城,成人圖片區,成人圖片,成人貼圖,成人文章,成人小說,UT聊天室,聊天室,豆豆聊天室,哈啦聊天室,尋夢園聊天室,聊天室尋夢園,080中部人聊天室,080聊天室,中部人聊天室,080苗栗人聊天室,苗栗人聊天室,免費視訊聊天,免費視訊,視訊聊天室,視訊聊天情趣用品,情趣,情趣商品,愛情公寓,情色,情色貼圖,色情小說,情色小說,情色文學,色情,寄情築園小遊戲,色情遊戲,AIO交友愛情館,一葉情貼圖片區,情色論壇,色情影片,色情網站,微風成人區,微風成人,嘟嘟成人網,成人,18成人,成人影城,成人圖片,成人貼圖,成人圖片區,成人文章,成人小說,A片,AV女優,AV,A漫,免費A片,自拍,UT聊天室,聊天室,豆豆聊天室,哈啦聊天室,尋夢園聊天室,聊天室尋夢園,080中部人聊天室,080聊天室,080苗栗人聊天室情趣用品,情趣,情趣商品,愛情公寓,情色,情色貼圖,色情小說,情色小說,情色文學,色情,做愛,寄情築園小遊戲,色情遊戲,AIO交友愛情館,AIO,色情影片,情色網,微風成人,嘟嘟成人網,成人,18成人,成人影城,成人圖片,成人貼圖,成人圖片區,成人文章,成人小說,成人電影,麗的色遊戲,自拍,A片,AV女優,AV,A漫,視訊交友網,視訊,視訊交友,免費視訊聊天室,免費視訊,視訊聊天,視訊聊天室,UT聊天室,聊天室,豆豆聊天室,哈啦聊天室,尋夢園聊天室,聊天室尋夢園

Rómulo Vela Cervantes said...

Hola! I love Camille and Zapata. :D

Something I wrote earlier...

Blog Widget by LinkWithin