He didn't have to, and he didn't even have to wait long: He began his collection 18 months later by purchasing a bronze version of The Hand of God. He went on to be the founder and chairman of Cantor Fitzgerald, a global securities firm with offices in the major cities of the world. Meanwhile, he continued to collect, eventually amassing the world's largest private collection of works by Rodin.
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Fortunately for the world, he was open-handed with his acquisitions. The Cantors have donated more than works by Rodin to over 70 institutions around the world. They endowed museum galleries and sculpture gardens at Stanford, the Metropolitan Museum of Art and elsewhere; they have underwritten important exhibitions. A stroll around the campus shows the fruits of their munificence: the bust of Victor Hugo in Green Library, the larger-than-life Burghers of Calais in Memorial Court, and the sculpture garden, featuring the mammoth Gates of Hell , which over decades became "a repository for [Rodin's] artistic ideas," Barryte said.
Selected Bronzes - Iris & B. Gerald Cantor Foundation
Stanford's Gates is the fifth of seven worldwide, and the first to use the "lost wax" technique of casting, which produces greater fidelity than sand casting. For the exhibition, the museum has dedicated two-and-a-half galleries to Rodin, forming a small metropolis whose denizens are bronze and plaster rather than flesh and blood.
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It's a city where politicians jostle with artists, a Parisian police inspector Rodin's own father shares living space with a pontiff. Each sculpture has a story of its own.
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The Gates of Hell : Rodin's Passion in Stone by Arline Boucher Tehan (2010, Paperback)
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