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You Must Change Your Life: The Story of Rainer Maria Rilke and Auguste Rodin by Rachel Corbett at Abbey's Bookshop,

You Must Change Your Life: The Story of Rainer Maria Rilke and Auguste Rodin

Rachel Corbett



Biography: arts & entertainment;
Biography: literary


320 pages

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In Paris in 1902, Auguste Rodin had just completed his sculpture The Thinker.

Visiting from Prague was Rainer Maria Rilke, broke and with writer’s block.

When Rilke is commissioned to write a book about Rodin, everything changes.

You Must Change Your Life tells one of the great stories of modern art and literature: Rodin and Rilke’s years together as master and disciple, their heartbreaking rift, and finally their moving reconciliation.

Rachel Corbett reveals how Rodin’s friendship led Rilke to write his most celebrated poems and inspired his Letters to a Young Poet.

She captures the dawn of Modernism amid the characters that made up their circle, including Paul Cezanne, Henri Matisse, Lou Andreas-Salome, George Bernard Shaw and Jean Cocteau. And she recounts the friendship of two artists whose work reverberates a century later.


 "Corbett’s writing demonstrates a genuine enthusiasm for her subjects and an intimate understanding of the art world. A wonderful addition to the library of any art lover!" - Sian McNabney, Abbey's bookseller

By:   Rachel Corbett
Imprint:   Norton
Country of Publication:   United States
Dimensions:   Height: 244mm,  Width: 168mm,  Spine: 28mm
Weight:   510g
ISBN:   9780393245059
ISBN 10:   0393245055
Pages:   320
Publication Date:   November 2016
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Hardback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Rachel Corbett is the executive editor of Modern Painters. Her writing has appeared in The New Yorker, the New York Times, The Art Newspaper, New York magazine, and others. She lives in Brooklyn, New York.

Rachel Corbett has written an elegant and moving account of what was a cultural turning point, seen through the eyes of two very different artists. -- Luke Barr, author of Provence, 1970 Charming and funny, Rachel Corbett renders turn-of-the-twentieth-century Paris in all its gritty glory, illustrating how the same place that saw 'Baudelaire charge through the streets waving a gun and Balzac nearly starve to death' could foster a magical artistic relationship like this one. -- Ada Calhoun. author of St. Marks Is Dead In telling the story of what Rilke and Rodin shared, Rachel Corbett reconstructs the dramas of an entire past world, with its characters and customs, epiphanies and heartbreaks. At the same time, she has managed the neat trick of producing the rare work of intellectual history that reads as a vital guide to what it means to be a thinking, feeling artist in the present. -- Ben Davis, author of 9.5 Theses on Art and Class In honeyed, knowing prose, Rachel Corbett twines two great serpents of art: the suppleness of Rodin's malleable flesh and eroticism and Rilke's endless lyrical rivers. New portals of aesthetic intonations open; invisible elements come into sight. -- Jerry Saltz, senoir art critic, New York Magazine Corbett's deep knowledge of her subjects accessibly reveals the strong connections-and various differences-between [Rilke and Rodin]... An excellent look at two men of incredible talent. -- Kirkus Reviews A smartly written biography... Rilke and Rodin, both intriguing figures in their own right, are only the more fascinating when treated together as fellow artists and close friends. -- Publishers Weekly

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