Sunday, December 12, 2010
Robert Rauschenberg October 22, 1925 – May 12, 2008
Rauschenberg was an American artist who came to prominence in the 1950s transition from Abstract Expressionism to Pop Art. Rauschenberg is well-known for his "Combines" of the 1950s, in which non-traditional materials and objects were employed in innovative combinations. Rauschenberg was both a painter and a sculptor and the Combines are a combination of both, but he also worked with photography, printmaking, papermaking, and performance. Rauschenberg would picke up trash and found objects that interested him on the streets of New York City and brought these back to his studio where they could become integrated into his work. He claimed he "wanted something other than what I could make myself and I wanted to use the surprise and the collectiveness and the generosity of finding surprises. And if it wasn't a surprise at first, by the time I got through with it, it was. So the object itself was changed by its context and therefore it became a new thing." This sentiment can be seen in his various works. One of my favorite works from him would have to be monogram. In this piece Rauschenberg found a taxidermied goat, put it in a tire and placed it on a painted canvas. At my high school we had "Raushenberg Day" when Raushenberg would come and talk to us and do projects with the students. I was lucky enough to work with him on several projects that are on display at the school.