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Paris's revamped Rodin Museum offers fascinating glimpse into famed artist's life

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A museum dedicated to Auguste Rodin has reopened in Paris on the famed French sculptor’s 175th birthday.

Hotel Biron – the 18th century Parisian mansion that hosts the museum – partially shut in 2012 and closed to the public completely at the start of 2015 for a €16m (US$17.1m, £11.3m) overhaul. This included urgent floor repairs and a complete redesign of its interiors – the first such redesign since Rodin himself used the venue as a studio until his death in 1917.

Rodin, famed for pieces such as “The Thinker” and “The Kiss”, also had a private personal art collection including works by Edvard Munch and Vincent Van Gogh, which are on display for visitors to enjoy.

For the revamp, Richard Duplat acted as chief architect of historical monuments, while Atelier de l’Ile’s Domonique Brard was charged with exhibition design. English paint manufacturer Farrow & Ball was also involved, handling colour enhancement.

The museum now offers improved layout and intelligent lighting effects designed to allow visitors to get closer to Rodin’s works and to see them in the best possible way. The exhibition space is spread across 18 rooms, with visitors taking a chronological journey through Rodin’s life and being offered a thematic exploration of his work.

A room titled “Rodin at the Hôtel Biron’ will be an exact recreation of the space as it was when the sculptor worked and lived there, including its original furniture, works by Rodin himself and pieces from his personal collection. In addition, never-before-seen displays of his work have been included in the revamp.

French Prime Minister, Manuel Valls, inaugurated the fully renovated property on 9 November, with its doors opening to the public today (12 November). Project costs were partially funded by using Rodin's original moulds to cast new bronzes and the remainder came from the French state. Prior to its 2012 closure, the museum welcomed more than 700,000 visitors a year.

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A museum dedicated to Auguste Rodin has reopened in Paris on the famed French sculptor’s 175th birthday.
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