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Traveling Exhibitions

Iris & B. Gerald Cantor Foundation / Foundation / Traveling Exhibitions

Beginning in 1978, the Iris & B. Gerald Cantor Foundation has shared its collection of Rodin sculpture with museums throughout the United States and Canada and loaned works to museums in Singapore, Venezuela, Australia, and Japan.  Loans from the Foundation occasionally mean sending a few pieces to a special exhibition organized by a host museum.  Most often, the Foundation loans an entire exhibition that it organizes itself.

“The people of Arcadiana [Louisiana] still talk and reminisce about the [1994] exhibit…and count it as one of the most importance events – cultural or otherwise – to have occured in this area in recent years. You would be amazed at what a difference that exhibit has made. Since the Rodin exhibit public demand for the arts has increased enormously. I would wager that what you have…accomplished here, in this largely rural area of a half-million people, has affected more individuals, in more ways, than perhaps anything else that you have ever done. You have awakened more appetites, enlarged more lives, and opened more eyes (and doors) than you could ever imagine. Years from now, people may very well look back on the Rodin exhibit, and count it as one of the greatest influences in who and what our people eventually become.”

Usually two exhibitions – one large and the other smalle – travel simultaneously.  The large shows often consist of approximately seventy pieces and provide a comprehensive retrospective of Rodin’s work.   The smaller shows tend to be thematic, sized to be appropriate for smaller college, university, and community museums and galleries.  All shows travel with extensive educational materials, including family guides, brochures, text panels, and object labels.  The Foundation also provides host institutions with information for teachers to use to prepare classes for museum visits.

Since 1978, these exhibitions have attracted more than ten million visitors at more than two hundred venues in forty-three states, Canada, and abroad. As Rachael Blackburn points out in her foreword to the Foundation’s 2001 book Rodin:  A Magnificent Obsession, “Except for the necessary shipping containers, darkened storage areas were never a part of Mr. Cantor’s plan.”