Class Year


Document Type

Student Research Paper

Date of Creation

Spring 2015

Department 1



French sculptress Camille Claudel has gained recognition in the past 30 years due to a focus on her tragic life rather than her artistic talent. Despite critical acclaim and respect amongst her peers during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, her affair with Auguste Rodin and her struggles with mental illness have cast a dark, dramatic shadow over modern interpretations of Claudel’s oeuvre. Considering how difficult it was for a woman to be working as an artist at this time, Claudel’s sculptures should not be outweighed by her personal life. In order to challenge the reader not to accept a simple biographical analysis of her oeuvre, I am looking at select works and considering how Claudel incorporated other art genres, daily life and literature references. Just as Claudel is often overlooked in a biography of Rodin, this investigation into Claudel’s inspirations does not simply accept him as the driving force behind her pieces, but instead chooses to go beyond Rodin in search of a renewed acclaim, and a new legacy, for Camille Claudel.


Art History Senior Thesis