Robert Rauschenberg Oral History Project

In an effort to preserve the legacy of Rauschenberg’s life and work, the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation, in collaboration with INCITE/Columbia Center for Oral History Research, has undertaken the Robert Rauschenberg Oral History Project. This collection of firsthand accounts, as told by the artist’s family, friends, and many collaborators, is housed on the foundation website. Upon completion of the project in 2017, transcripts will also be available on the Columbia University website and in its Rare Books and Manuscript Library.

We began making interviews available on our website in 2015 and continue to roll out more as transcripts are finalized. An illustrated pdf of the entire transcript is provided for each oral history. Select oral histories also include a short biography of the narrator, an excerpt from the interview transcript, documentary photography, and a short video or audio clip.

In 2010, a preliminary oral history project, Interviews with Rauschenberg Friends and Associates, was undertaken by Karen Thomas of Film Odyssey at the request of the Robert Rauschenberg Revocable Trust. More information on this earlier project, including how to make an appointment to view transcripts, can be found on our archives collection page.

While the collaboration with Columbia is a formal approach that the foundation has undertaken to preserve many recollections about the artist and his time, we recognize that there are a number of Rauschenberg storytellers who we may as yet not know and whose stories we are eager to hear.

If you have a noteworthy Rauschenberg story that you would like to share with us, and which relates to the life and times of the artist, we would welcome hearing from you. Please write or record your story in a format that you prefer and send it to stories@rauschenbergfoundation.org. A selection of Rauschenberg Stories will be chosen for inclusion on the foundation website.

Rauschenberg in his Broadway studio, New York, 1965. Photo: Ugo Mulas © Ugo Mulas Heirs. All rights reserved. www.ugomulas.org

Oral Histories

Laurie Anderson
Janet Begneaud
Thomas Buehler
Virginia Dwan
Sidney Felsen
Simone Forti
Arne Glimcher
Agnes Gund
Alex Hay
Deborah Hay
Harold Hodges
Brice Marden
Julie Martin
Yvonne Rainer
Christopher Rauschenberg
Christopher Rauschenberg
Donald Saff
Asha and Suhrid Sarabhai
Mayo Thompson Rauschenberg Oral History Headshot
Mayo Thompson
Calvin Tomkins
Susan Weil
David White
Robert Whitman
More Oral Histories