Friday, June 20, 2008

A Tribute to Robert Rauschenberg

"People ask me, "Don't you ever run out of ideas?" In the first place I don't use ideas. Every time I have an idea it's too limiting, and usually turns out to be a disappointment. But I haven't run out of curiosity." --Robert Rauschenberg

Back when I was studying "modern" art in college, there were several artists whose work changed my whole way of thinking about art. I remember studying the paintings of Richard Diebenkorn, Robert Rauschenberg and Francis Bacon and being awestruck. This wasn't the art I had grown up with or was even vaguely familiar with. This was something entirely different, and it opened up my eyes to the exciting world of conceptual and figurative art.

On May 12, 2008 Robert Rauschenberg died at the age of 82. He is best known for his innovative assemblages using nontraditional materials, like trash from the streets of New York and a stuffed goat. On the work above, "Canyon", he's attached a bald eagle to the canvas. What I've always found most fascinating about his work is the depth and layers of texture. His paintings are more like sculptures at times. Today's artists working in multi-media assemblages owe a nod of thanks to the great master.

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