09 October 2016

Rodin's hands

From Conversations with Stravinsky

"I made his (Rodin's) acquaintance in the Grand Hotel in Rome shortly after the beginning of the First World War. Diaghilev had organized a benefit concert there in which I conducted the Suite from Petrouschka.
I confess I was more interested in him because of his fame than because of his art for I did not share the enthusiasm of his numerous and serious admirers. I met him again, some time later at one of our ballet performances in Paris. He greeted me kindly, as though I were an old acquaintance, and at that moment I remembered the impression his fingers had made on me at our first handshaking. They were soft, quite the contrary of what I had expected, they did not seem to belong to a male hand. He had a long white beard that reached down to the navel of his long, buttoned-up surtout, and white hair covered his entire face. He sat reading a Ballet Russe programme though a pince-nez while people waited patiently for the great old artist to stand up as they passed in his row..."