"The Kiss - Rodin and Brancusi

             Constantine Brancusi, a Romanian sculptor born in 1876, is considered one of the first creators in modern art. As a young man he was a craftsman in woodcarving. From 1898-1902, he studied at the National Fine Arts School in Bucharest. In 1904, after traveling through Budapest, Vienna, Munich, and Switzerland, he found himself in Paris where, by receiving a grant, Brancusi was able to enroll at the Ecole des Beaux Arts under Antonin Mercie. In 1907, Brancusi was admitted into Rodin’s studio for practicing, but left shortly after.
             Among many of Brancusi’s sculptures is The Kiss, first sculpted in 1908, can be compared to Rodin’s The Kiss, completed in 1885. Rodin’s The Kiss is a representation of the story of Paolo, the brother of Gianciotto, and Francesca, Gianciotto’s wife, in Dante’s book The Divine Comedy: Inferno. They fell in love while reading romances of courtly love and after exchanging their first kiss, Gianciotto caught them by surprise and stabbed them. Rodin being an impressionist created the sculpture in true human form. The audience can feel the passion, love, and true happiness as the two embrace in their first kiss. Knowing their story, we can see the fragility of love, in that once love is found it can easily be lost.
             In contrast, Brancusi’s The Kiss displays that love is everlasting. Brancusi carved a version of the sculpture from limestone a strong stone that can withstand the test of time. The two people are carved as though if separated, without one, they are not whole. The couple holds each other in an embrace so close and tight that no one can come between them. They gaze deeply into each other’s eyes looking directly at each other never to stray. The eyes also create one eye to the viewer, which reminds me of when a couple is so in love, that even without words, just by looking at each other they know what the other is thinking or feeling. The pair’s mouths are in a kiss, a s...

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