Celebrating Robert Rauschenberg

Berlin Banhoff Rauschenberg Today’s New York Times reports that Robert Rauschenberg has passed away at age 82.Rauschenberg is my favorite American artist. An innovative painter, photographer and printmaker, he has always been able to find beauty and meaning in the seemingly “mundane” and “everyday” objects around him. He is a master at layering disassociated objects, texture, and color into his work.He is also fearless when it comes to appropriating images, such as John F. Kennedy, or NASA photographs, and as a result his artwork helped to define a generation. Most of all, Rauschenberg is a tireless creator, always willing to try new techniques and technologies.It’s his printmaking that I enjoy most. Having been inspired by an exhibit of his large screenprints at Gemini G.E.L. at Joni Moisant Weyl gallery in NYC, I returned home, confident to pursue my interest in culture and to continue my own experiments with transfer printing. Perhaps Appointment is my favorite of this series.Berlin Banhoff RauschenbergSeveral years later I visited Berlin and the Hamburger Bahnhoff Museum and was able to see several of his large combines in person. These massive canvases, with objects such as fans and chairs protruding from the surface, colors that pop, and his signature transfer process reproducing everyday objects such as shower curtains, apartment buildings and bicycles speak to me in a language of visual clues, asking me to question and interpret the work in whichever way I choose. Rauschenberg would never force meaning on the viewer, instead, he left the viewer to decipher it for themselves. Rest in Peace, Robert Rauschenberg, may your artwork continue to enrich and inspire!How has his art touched your life? Leave your comments here.

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