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Jan 5, 2017



Visit the Artists-in-Residence page to learn more about this group of artists.

Nov 17, 2016


Rauschenberg Residency

Visit the Artists-in-Residence page to learn more about this group of artists.

Sep 18, 2016



Visit the Artists in Residence page to learn more about this group of artists.

Jul 27, 2016



Visit the Artists-in-Residence page to learn more about the Residency 21 artists.

Jun 6, 2016



Visit the Artists in Residence page to learn more about the Residency 20 artists.

Apr 20, 2016


Rauschenberg in front of the Fish House with Global Chute (Kabal American Zephyr) (1982), Captiva, Florida, circa 1982. Photo: Terry Van Brunt


Throughout his career, Robert Rauschenberg used his platform as an artist to increase knowledge about global issues and to raise money for many causes and organizations.

The safekeeping of the environment and the notion of individual responsibility for the welfare of life on earth was one of Rauschenberg’s key causes. This commitment to the environment that extended throughout various aspects of his work and life took focus in 1970 when he purchased his first tract of land on Captiva Island. Rauschenberg viewed his residence in Captiva as dependent on the natural environment of the island. He therefore focused on the maintenance of this land as a natural habitat throughout his lifetime. Images from the surrounding landscape and wildlife, as well as of issues that affected the island such as water conservation, served as regular inspiration for his work. Over the course of forty years, he bought historic cottages and adjacent land to preserve and protect it from encroaching commercial development, and undertook a significant restoration of the landscape after Hurricane Charley in 2004.

Today the property remains intact as a pristine natural environment, hosting more than seventy artists each year for month-long residencies in Rauschenberg’s former home and studio.

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Truce (Scenario), 2003


 

Apr 14, 2016



Rising Waters Confab II will bring together the perspectives of architects, artists, scientists, and writers to address issues of climate change. Visit the Artists in Residence page to learn more about this diverse group of creative thinkers.

Feb 26, 2016



Visit the Artists in Residence page to learn more about the Residency 18 artists. 

Jan 6, 2016



Visit the Artists in Residence page to learn about the Residency 17 artists.

Dec 8, 2015


Rising Water residents working together in Captiva, FL. Video by Dancing Camera

In the spring of 2015 twenty artists and scientists were invited by the Foundation to convene in Captiva, Florida for the first-ever Rauschenberg Residency focused on climate change.

Curated by the artists Buster Simpson and Laura Sindell, the "Rising Waters Confab" was designed to spark a productive dialogue amongst scientists, activists, artists, island dwellers, and others, and work toward addressing the realities of sea level rise.

Some of the concepts generated during the residency have served as catalysts for projects taking place at ArtCOP21, a global festival of cultural activity on climate change happening now through December 11 in 51 countries around the world. One of these events is L’Arctique est Paris (created and produced by Mel Chin, Gretel Ehrlich, Ed Morris, Helen Nagge) a film project with the message that "the Arctic drives the climate of the world."Another is a video installation, The Lost Defenders (created and produced by Orion Cruz and Mika Yamaguchi) about those on the frontlines of the struggle to protect what’s left of our environment. Back in Florida, the City of Hialeah presents CLIMA by Xavier Cortada.

In his summary document about the Confab Buster Simpson writes: The intent of the Rising Waters Confab was to further Rauschenberg’s lifelong approach to use art as a catalyst for social and environmental change, and to bring together artists, scientists, and other creative thinkers in this endeavor. This powerful new video filmed during Rising Waters Confab reveals how the Rauschenberg Residency serves as an effective platform for cross-disciplinary approaches to problem solving and the cultivation of ideas that become motivators for action. 

Watch the Rising Waters Confab video >

Learn more about Rising Waters Confab >

Sep 21, 2015


Residency 15 Artists

Visit the Artists in Residence page to learn about the Residency 15 artists.

Aug 31, 2015


Robert Rauschenberg Foundation Artists-in-Residence 2015-2016

Photo: Sage Sohier


The Robert Rauschenberg Foundation (RRF) is pleased to announce the third season of the Rauschenberg Residency in Captiva, Florida.

Interdisciplinary in its focus, the Rauschenberg Residency is based on Rauschenberg's formative experience at Black Mountain College, North Carolina, and his belief that art can affect positive social change. Sited on the grounds of Rauschenberg's former home and studio on Captiva Island, the Residency maintains a robust commitment to the preservation of the land—its history and the stewardship of the natural environment. 

Each year the foundation appoints an anonymous group of artists, arts administrators, curators, and partner organizations to identify emerging and recognized artists and other creative thinkers. The foundation has, for the second year, invited an artist to organize a residency focused on the environment

Of the nine, five-week residencies this season, six include invited artists in a wide range of disciplines, while three have a particular focus: a family residency for artists with young children; a performance residency held in partnership with Danspace, New York; and the second Rising Waters Confab, to address climate change. 


2015–16 Residents

The 2015–16 participants represent diverse ages, geographies, and disciplines. They range in age from twenty-five to seventy-eight, and originate from fourteen states, and thirteen countries, including Botswana, Greece, Ireland, South Africa, and Vietnam. The array of disciplines includes: choreography, dance, interdisciplinary filmmaking, painting, photography, poetry, sculpture, and sound art.

September 21–October 23, 2015—Muriel Miguel Borst, Andries Botha, Maria Hassabi, Naomi Natale, Silke Otto-Knapp, Cauleen Smith, Tamara Staples

November 16–December 18, 2015—Susan Banyas, Will Cotton, LeBrie Rich, Louise Steinman, Lavinia Vago, Kate Wallich, Bill Will

January 11–February 12, 2016—Jane Hirshfield, Victoria Marks, Susan McAllister, Danny McCarthy, Mick O’Shea, Jasiri X, Bob Tannen, James Weingrod

February 29–April 1, 2016—Katie Aliprando, Caitlin Cherry, Ty Defoe, David Harper, Jill Sigman, Alex Smith, Dana Wheeler-Nicholson, Christopher Williams

April 18–May 18, 2016—Rising Waters Confab II organized by Buster Simpson

June 13–July 15, 2016—Family Residency: David Hartt, Ralph Lemon, Meleko Mokgosi, Chemi Rosado

August 1–September 2, 2016—Njideka Akunyili Crosby, Magdalena Campos-Pons, Josephine Halvorson, Steffani Jemison, Dinh Q. Lê, Neil Leonard, Harold Mendez, Sohrab Mohebbi, Thenmozhi Soundararajan, Deanna Van Buren

September 19–October 21, 2016—Performance Residency with Wally Cardona in partnership with Danspace, New York.

November 14–December 16, 2016—Raul Ayala, Kevin Beasley, Jen Bervin, Fernanda Espinosa, Matthew Goulish, Lin Hixson, Deborah Luster, Kate McNeely, Eiko Otake, Steve Roden, Rachel Schragis

Jul 31, 2015


R14 Meet the Artists Edit

Visit the Artists in Residence page to learn about the Residency 14 artists. 

Jun 15, 2015



Visit the Artists in Residence page to learn about the Residency 13 artists

Jun 1, 2015


The Rising Waters Confab Open Studio, May 27, 2015


The Rising Waters Confab, held at the Rauschenberg Residency (April 27–May 29, 2015), was inspired by Robert Rauschenberg’s lifelong belief in the power of collaboration and the potential for art to bring about positive social change. To address climate change, the most pressing concern of our time, the Rising Waters Confab convened an interdisciplinary group of creative thinkers, including artists, scientists, activists, educators, and island dwellers at the Rauschenberg Residency on Captiva Island, Florida. Rising Waters Confab is the first time that the residency has been dedicated to a single theme.

During the five-week immersion, participants differed widely in their approach, background, and knowledge but were equal in their dedication to addressing climate change. “Confabbing”—or meeting, sharing meals, exploring the local environs, and making art—resulted in provocative and powerful collaborations and reflected a shared commitment to the issue. The Confab culminated in an Open Studio (May 27, 2015) when the public was invited to meet with the participants to view their individual and collaborative works in process. 

Rising Waters Confab was organized by Buster Simpson, Laura Sindell, and Anne Focke. Each of the twenty participants provided an invaluable contribution and made an inimitable imprint on the experience and the outcome of the residency. 

Apr 22, 2015


Earth Day, 1970


The protection of the planet has been central to the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation’s mission since its founding by the artist in 1990. In 1991, through the sale of an edition and poster designed by Rauschenberg, the foundation raised  funds and greater awareness for the Earth Pledge that was announced at the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) that same year. The foundation continues to uphold that original pledge “to make the earth a secure and hospitable home for present and future generations.”

For the next thirty days, in celebration of the forty-fifth anniversary of Earth Day, the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation will highlight some of the grants and programs that extend the artist’s legacy as a champion of the environment. You can join the conversation by following the foundation on Twitter and Facebook. News items include:

Today the foundation is announcing $250,000 in grants to agencies working in Southwest Florida, including a grant to the Sanibel Captiva Conservation Fund, which focuses much of its work on the preservation of Florida’s fragile wetlands and other ecosystems. All of the awardees were identified through a partnership with the Southwest Florida Community Foundation to advance social innovation in the region. Southwest Florida is an area where Rauschenberg lived and worked for forty years and a place of ongoing investment for the foundation. To learn more about this partnership and the $250,000 in grants, you can read more here.

You can also read the newly posted Art in Context to learn more about Rauschenberg’s commitment to the environment in his art and activities. Among the highlighted artworks is Rauschenberg’s Earth Day poster, created for the first annual Earth Day on April 22, 1970, to benefit the American Environment Foundation in Washington, D.C. The poster is the first of many editioned works that the artist produced to support the social and political causes most important to him.

This Monday, April 27, 2015, will mark the beginning of a month-long gathering of artists, scientists, engineers, and activists at the Rauschenberg Residency on Captiva Island, Florida. Entitled Rising Waters Confab, the meeting aims to spark new thinking and to influence civic will toward finding and spreading solutions for the rising waters of climate change. Participants will contribute to a blog that captures key themes and ideas.

Over the next month, the foundation will share more highlights of its work to support a healthy, sustainable planet, including announcing the inaugural grantees of its Climate Change Solutions Fund, a new initiative that spurs the use of cultural and civic engagement to advance solutions to global warming.  

Apr 17, 2015


Photos: Sage Sohier


During his residency, Tijuana-based artist Marcos Ramirez printed the front page of a different international newspaper each day for thirty-three days and screen-printed imagery that he had photographed around Captiva. Later, he will add text to create a personal journal that is juxtaposed against his worldview. Inspired by Rauschenberg’s legacy of printmaking and collage, Ramirez chose to integrate similar techniques into his work during the residency.

Other artists in Residency 11 were also influenced by the ways in which Rauschenberg worked. David Martine and Shawne Major experimented with screen printing with their individual art practices; Martine created three murals as he worked directly in Rauschenberg’s former studio, and which enabled him to step back in time to imagine Rauschenberg’s experimentation process; and Major also found the residency invigorating and plans to incorporate Rauschenberg’s methods into her next mixed-media works.

Catherine Chalmers arrived in Captiva with the idea to make screen prints but found it led to something else: “I brought several images for this purpose and when printing them into black and white and adding one color during the preparation, I inadvertently discovered an exciting way to create digital paintings. Although this finding led me away from making screen prints, I would not have discovered this new process without trying to manipulate the images for the screen. I am completely thrilled to have found a new method in which to work with my vast and beloved body of photographs.”

James Leary came to the residency in early March with a plan to complete the first draft of a screenplay, which he achieved. Yet two unforeseen projects also emerged: A series of 300 drawings and what turned out to be, in his words, “a complete surprise,” learning the process to create cyanotypes and executing a series of prints in collaboration with the art critic Charlie Schultz. Schultz also completed a writing project on photography and industry in America.

Photographers Chandra McCormick and Keith Calhoun finally found the time to print their Kodachrome slides that had been waterlogged during Hurricane Katrina, and which they had kept in a freezer that was found on the street to preserve them.

Two artists during the residency used elements that had washed ashore. Diane Schenandoah sculpted driftwood and wood from Australian pine and Sea Grape trees. Charles Lindsay used the carcasses of horseshoe crabs in a sculpture piece for an upcoming exhibition. He noted, “The re-discovery of horseshoe crabs is significant by adding a perfect symbol species to the part of my artistic mission that considers nonhuman intelligence and vast time scales. My challenge continues to be about bringing nature, technology, and the nature of existence into the contemporary art domain. The pace and arc of this project speaks well to adaptation and to responding to a location and situation, which is a high compliment to the residency itself.”

Apr 14, 2015



Visit the Artists in Residence page to learn about Residency 12 and Rising Waters Confab.  

Feb 26, 2015



Visit the Artists in Residence page to learn about the Residency 11 artists.

Jan 28, 2015



Visit the Artists in Residence page to learn about the Residency 10 artists. 

Jan 15, 2015


Photos: Sage Sohier

Once the home of the Calusa Indian tribe and then two centuries later, a fishing destination for Theodore Roosevelt and Thomas Edison, Captiva Island, Florida, now boasts luxury homes on a street nicknamed the “Gold Coast.” But the enchantment of the land that Robert Rauschenberg embraced for forty years remains and is invigorated by the newest, and perhaps most itinerant, visitors to the island, the artists in residence at the Rauschenberg Residency. And so what does this small cohort of artists do for thirty-three days on this island in the Gulf of Mexico?
 
“I was able to work on thirty-five paintings and experiment with different surfaces instead of canvas (muslin, plastic, plexi). I experimented with different forms of hanging, suspending work from the ceiling like stretched cowhide or suspended from a point (this technique also allowed me to consider installation work more effectively than I am usually able to in my studio). The last five paintings at the residency incorporated plastic/drop cloth from the floor and allowed me to begin a dialogue between painting and performance,” wrote Gage Peer (Santa Fe). And did this differ from his original intention? “I did plan to work with painting, but the amount of work and the introduction of these materials and how they would change my painting process was not planned.”
 
For many, the experience transcends initial aspirations. “I accomplished so much . . . above and beyond my expectations!” wrote Laurie Lambrecht (Bridgehampton, NY), and so, too, for David Francis (Minneapolis), “The pace and depth of work on my memoir was far beyond my expectations that I remain flabbergasted.”
 
The plan is often best left behind, as Douglas Coupland (Vancouver) noted, “I think that if I arrived with a definite idea in my head and only worked on that idea, it would defeat the spell of the place.” The residency experience has also proven to be a trigger. “When I got home I had a creative explosion that could never have happened if not for the ideas from RR and their incubation there.”
 
Another artist, Brighde Mullins (Los Angeles), wrote afterward, “To be in a place where nature is still in charge was a huge influence. I felt like I had a different experience of time because of the proximity to the water and the plants and animals. Being on Captiva was a daily lesson in humility and in the finite capacity of humans. Being in Bob’s World was inspiring and calming. I remembered that I used to draw and paint and make collages of my play worlds (I’m primarily a playwright), and being around his work and his spirit reconnected me to the multidimensional aspect of creating a character.”
 
Collaborations took place slowly and organically. As Keith Sklar (Chicago) listed in his follow-up evaluation: “Experiments with residency staff Matt, Carrell, and Maria in silkscreen. Exploration of digital printing and Photoshop with Carrell and Ehren. An improvised performance with musician David Ornette Cherry and painter Gage Peer. Planned possible series of public artworks in collaboration with Dorit Cypis and Brighde Mullins, based on Brighde’s work on Phyllis Wheatley. Discussions and critiques of a range of residents’ art practices and ideas throughout the residency.”
 
The community was engaged, as well, through an outreach where the two musicians, David Ornette Cherry (Portland, OR) and Colin Gilmore (Austin) performed for 160 elementary school students at Sanibel School. Later the same day, an Open Studio was held in the Main Studio at the residency for fifty community members.
 
And there was time for other kinds of work, too, as Dorit Cypis noted. “Resting, listening, biking, dreaming, reflecting, questioning, sharing, communing, exploring, experimenting, recognizing others, recognizing myself, writing, wandering, wondering, walking, boating, beaching, bird watching, eating.”
 
The influence of Robert Rauschenberg pervades the residency as Mary Ellen Carroll (New York) reflected, “I thanked him constantly as he and his legacy made it possible to be there and to work as an artist. To have the people and equipment and facilities to realize 500 silkscreens and digital prints and paintings. . . .”
 
“I look forward to the months ahead to absorb and utilize the inspiration and ideas,” Laurie Lambrecht wrote, summing up the residency experience. “I learned much about myself; it was a time of growth.”

Dec 5, 2014


SEED Summit 2014


Robert Rauschenberg Foundation Hosts Grantees on Its Captiva Campus
Eighty-five nonprofit professionals from across the country join together at historic island residence

Beginning November 3, the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation used its Captiva Campus to host eighty-five artists, entrepreneurs, community organizers, and social innovators from across the United States, and who have received support through the foundation’s SEED Grant program. The inaugural SEED Summit, which is intended to become an annual event at Captiva, brought these arts professionals together for a one week meeting to build skills, share knowledge, and form ongoing relationships. 

Download Full Press Release

Nov 7, 2014


Photos: Sage Sohier


On November 17, 2014, Rauschenberg Residency 9 begins. Ten artists, including musicians, visual artists, and writers from across the United States and Canada will arrive to work, share meals, play, commune, and collaborate at the residency that provides them with the time, space, and resources to explore new possibilities. 
 
“I may be asking volunteers to help me collect drift items from local beaches,” explained Douglas Coupland. A writer who has published fourteen novels and several nonfiction works, Doug is also a visual artist. It will be his visual practice that he intends to focus on during his five weeks in Captiva. Meanwhile, time away from routine will allow poet and playwright Brighde Mullins to complete unfinished writing projects and start new ones.
David Ornette Cherry, whose music mixes world and jazz idioms, plans to edit video and audio, create a book prototype, paint, and experiment with Pro Tools, the audio tools software programs. Joining him in the Pro Tools tutorial is songwriter Colin Gilmore, who “turns life experiences into poetry, and puts poetry to soundwaves and lighwaves that bring it to life.”
 
Experimentation with new methods continues to be the hallmark of the Rauschenberg Residency, since the pilot program began in 2012, with screenprinting among the most popular. Photographer Laurie Lambrecht and visual artist, educator, mediator, and community-builder Dorit Cypis both plan to investigate the form. While Laurie will also work with cyanotypes and photography, Dorit expects to write, work with small props, fabricate, print text photographs, and work with writer and collaborator David Francis.
 
The main studio, built for Rauschenberg in 1990, is a majestic 16,000-square-foot, two-story, white building that presents a blank canvas to each new group of residents. It will be filled with paintings by Keith Sklar and Gage Peer, while the 3-D studio will be used by Conceptual artist Mary Ellen Carroll to work in a variety of mediums, including printmaking, photography, video, and fabrication.