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See Monumental Rodin Sculptures and Contemporary Responses at New Cincinnati Art Museum Exhibition

6/4/2024 12:00:00 AM

June 14–September 8, 2024

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CINCINNATI — June 4, 2024 —Four full-scale, bronze figures by renowned sculptor Auguste Rodin (French, 1840–1917) will be on view at the Cincinnati Art Museum (CAM) this summer. Alongside them, visitors will see the culmination of a research and creative project led by artist and educator Mrin Aggarwal (Supermrin) that involved contemporary artists, University of Cincinnati (UC) undergraduates and the breadth of CAM’s collections. Rodin | Response: FIELD family secrets will run June 14–September 8, 2024.

Rodin conceived the statues in the 1880s as part of The Burghers of Calais. One of the artist’s most revered and recognizable works, the monument commemorates six leading citizens of Calais who offered their lives to save their city in the mid-1300s.  

These monumental bronzes provided the starting point for a semester-long journey of study, conversation, critique and creation that took place across several courses in UC’s School of Art. The project was shaped through FIELD, Supermrin’s decolonial bio-art practice. The group worked to respond to Rodin’s accomplishments in sculpture and the complex history of France and its colonies at the turn of the 20th century, exploring the afterlives of modernism and colonialism through the art of today.

The project resulted in new artworks made by Supermrin, her students and invited artist Laura K. Reeder. Nine of these will be presented alongside the Burghers, other sculptures by Rodin and artworks from across CAM’s collections. Rodin | Response serves as a study of the ongoing varied and expressive practices within the field of sculpture.

The exhibition’s artist-curator Supermrin said: “Working so closely with an institution of the highest caliber and having access to Rodin’s canonical artworks have been transformative for my students, who have engaged with art history, decolonialism and contemporary sculpture in sophisticated new ways. I could not be prouder. It has been fascinating to respond to these seminal bronze sculptures with the organic and biologic materials that I use in my practice – materials that are often challenging to host within institutions. In that, the museum has been an incredible partner, and Peter is the dream collaborator for any artist seeking to produce truly experimental art and scholarship.”

“This is a remarkable project through which four incomparable sculptures by Rodin, generously lent to the museum by Iris Cantor, have inspired new artworks and unlocked tangled histories,” added Peter Jonathan Bell, CAM Curator of European Paintings, Sculpture and Drawings and co-curator of the exhibition. “I am deeply grateful to Mrin, who, with artistic vision, intellect and fearlessness, has engaged a new generation of artists and illuminated CAM’s collections and the history of modern sculpture in important new ways, giving us a vital glimpse at the meeting point of art, history and life.”

Rodin | Response: FIELD family secrets is organized by the Cincinnati Art Museum in collaboration with Supermrin and the School of Art, University of Cincinnati, and with the participation of the Iris Cantor Collection.

Sponsored by the Harold C. Schott Foundation. Additional support provided by the Wohlgemuth Herschede Foundation.

The exhibition will be on view in the Sara M. and Michelle Vance Waddell Gallery and the Manuel and Rhoda Mayerson Gallery (Galleries 124 and 125) located across from the Terrace Café. No tickets are required for this exhibition. General admission and parking at the Cincinnati Art Museum are also free. Photography is permitted, but no flash.  On social media, use the hashtag #RodinResponse.


Upcoming, related events:

Members Opening, Thursday, June 13 | 5–7 p.m.

Museum members are invited to view the exhibition before it opens to the public and enjoy light bites and a cash bar in our Great Hall. Free for members. Reservations not required.


Guest Lecture: The Art of Response, Thursday, June 13 | 7–8 p.m. (Sold out)

Join us for a special presentation by Adrienne L. Childs, PhD, esteemed independent scholar, art historian, and curator, celebrating the opening of the exhibition, Rodin | Response: FIELD family secrets. Dr. Childs will draw on her deep experience exploring the connections between the birth of modernism and contemporary art—across lines of culture, race, gender, and power structures—to address the underpinnings of this exhibition. Her talk examines the contemporary artistic and curatorial practice of response: how artists interpret, expand, and reorder the history of art. This event is free for members, $20 for the general public, and $5 for students. 

Schedule subject to change. Visit for the latest information.


About the Cincinnati Art Museum

One of the oldest arts institutions in the United States, and the first purpose-built art museum west of the Allegheny Mountains, the Cincinnati Art Museum features a diverse, encyclopedic art collection of more than 73,000 works spanning 6,000 years. In addition to displaying its own broad collection, the museum conducts extensive research and creates and organizes several exhibitions each year. It also hosts national and international traveling exhibitions. Through these critical projects and art-related programs, activities and special events, the museum contributes to a more vibrant Cincinnati by inspiring its people and connecting its communities.

The Cincinnati Art Museum is supported by the generosity of individuals and businesses that give annually to ArtsWave. The Ohio Arts Council helps fund the Cincinnati Art Museum with state tax dollars to encourage economic growth, educational excellence, and cultural enrichment for all Ohioans. The Cincinnati Art Museum gratefully acknowledges operating support from the City of Cincinnati, as well as its members. Free general admission to the Cincinnati Art Museum is made possible by a gift from the Rosenthal Family Foundation. Exhibition pricing may vary. Generous support for the museum’s extended Thursday hours is provided by Art Bridges Foundation’s Access for All program. Parking at the Cincinnati Art Museum is free. More information is available at

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