Biography of Camille Claudel (1864-1943)

Sculptor French, born in Villeneuve-sur-Fère in 1864 and died in 1943, which was for a long time, despite the quality of his work, best known for being the lover of which was his teacher and mentor, the eminent sculptor Auguste Rodin, which lived a tumultuous relationship which is based on, for example, the work to the awakening of our death (1900) by Henrik Ibsen.

Although from an early age Camille proved to have a flair for all kinds of art, leaned over for the tactile aspects of things, rather than by drawing or painting. When he was twelve years old, his father, Louis-Prosper Claudel, moved with his family to Nogent-sur-Seine, a town near Paris in which lived two important sculptors, Alfred Boucher and Paul Dubois (who would be in 1878 director of the school of fine arts of Paris), who, impressed by the skills showing Camille, supported the young for the entry into the Colarossi Academya few schools of art admitting female students at the time, where Camille had opportunity to join a group of sculptors receiving the weekly visit in his study of Boucher, who gave them lessons in an informal way.

When Boucher moved to Italy in 1883, the students of sculpture were under the tutelage of Rodin. The meeting between Rodin, of forty-three years, and Claudel, nineteen, was the beginning of a fifteen year relationship that would leave an indelible impression on the technique and the theme of the compositions of Camille, who went from register in the purest French academicism with soft and balanced figures and glorification of the classics, to represent nudes contorsionantes, most of allegorical theme.

In that year of 1884, Claudel helped Rodin in the realization of the gates of hell and the Burghers of Calais, two experiences that significantly altered his later work. On the other hand, the years he worked in the Studio of Rodin - the most productive of the life of the master - were tremendously destructive Claudel, in the sense that it was impossible to carry out his career independently, although he exhibited regularly in halls and galleries and even received several official commissions. Of this stage include compositions such as Giganti, in 1885, or young woman with a sheaf, executed six years later, in which reflects a greater interest in agricultural issues and that the figures are composed of different levels, which allows the sculptor to capture further tension in the movement.

From 1892 he began to deteriorate the relationship between the two, because Claudel refused to continue exposing beside him. Their story of love and hate was completed in 1898 and, although a decade Claudel continued sculpting, he ended up having serious financial difficulties and came to show signs of mental illness. In 1906 destroyed most of his work, and seven years later was admitted to a psychiatric hospital where he spent the last thirty years of his life at intervals. His correspondence with his brother, the writer Paul Claudel, gives a good example of the terrible thing that were in recent years for her.