The Foundation holds several archival collections, forming the most comprehensive body of information on the artist's life and career.
Robert Rauschenberg Papers
Consisting of Rauschenberg’s personal papers and studio records from his Captiva, Florida and New York studios, the Robert Rauschenberg papers (RRFA 01) contain 250 cubic feet (395 boxes) of records created and collected by Rauschenberg and his staff dated from 1939 -2012 (bulk 1970 – 2008). The collection documents Rauschenberg’s personal life and studio practice through materials such as personal correspondence, interviews, writings and notes, gallery and museum records, print studio project files, and performance documentation.
The Photograph Collection (RRFA 09) contains nearly 25 cubic feet of photographic prints, slides, and negatives (more than 7,000 images), shot primarily by Rauschenberg’s studio assistants, friends, and professional photographers. Spanning from 1927 to 2008, with some undated material, the collection documents the artist’s personal life, studio activities, performances, exhibitions, special projects, and events he attended.
The Audiovisual Collection (RRFA 02) contains film, video, and sound recordings created and collected by Rauschenberg, his studio staff, and the Rauschenberg Foundation. Approximately 50 cubic feet of recordings span the early 1950s to the present, including performance documentation, interviews and lectures, news reels, Rauschenberg Overseas Culture Interchange (ROCI) footage, exhibition documentation, as well as commercial films and unedited footage.
Rauschenberg Foundation Library
Consisting of select publications from Robert Rauschenberg’s Florida and New York studios as well as materials the Foundation has continued to collect, the Rauschenberg Foundation Library contains a comprehensive body of published information on the artist’s life, artwork, and career.
Robert Rauschenberg Oral History Project
The Robert Rauschenberg Oral History Project (RRFA 15), conducted from 2014 to 2018 in collaboration with INCITE/Columbia Center for Oral History Research, preserves the legacy of Rauschenberg’s life and work through firsthand accounts, as told by the artist’s family, friends, and many collaborators. Transcripts of over 40 completed interviews and select videos can be found on our website.
Donald Saff records on Rauschenberg Overseas Culture Interchange (ROCI)
The Donald Saff records on ROCI (RRFA 10) contains materials documenting the conception and implementation of ROCI that were created and collected by Saff, Artistic Director, 1984-1991. The approximately 15 cubic feet of materials includes international research and planning documents, correspondence, travel schedules, exhibition and venue details, and photographs.
Chun-Wuei Su Chien papers
The Chun-Wuei Su Chien papers (RRFA 05) document Chien’s role as Robert Rauschenberg’s coordinator and translator during Rauschenberg’s 1982 trip to the Anhui province and subsequent 1985 ROCI CHINA and ROCI TIBET exhibitions. The collection also contains a small amount of material from 1977 to 1996, which documents side projects related to Rauschenberg and Chien’s unrelated personal projects.
Charles Yoder records related to the Rauschenberg Studio
The Charles Yoder records related to the Robert Rauschenberg Studio (RRFA 14) contain materials created and collected by Charles Yoder, who served as Curator for Robert Rauschenberg’s studio from 1975 to 1980, and as Project Curator for Rauschenberg Overseas Culture Interchange (ROCI) from 1984 to 1990. Materials include administrative correspondence, travel schedules, expenditures, shipping and exhibition checklists, financial and legal documents, photographs, journals, and ephemera.
Julie Martin collection on E.A.T., Performance, and Artists
The Julie Martin collection on E.A.T., Performance, and Artists (RRFA 13) consists of digitized and born digital materials sent to the Foundation by Julie Martin from 2012 to present. Types of materials include audio and video interviews, photographs, film stills, video transfers, unpublished documentaries, performance programs, and writings.
Susan Davidson papers
The Susan Davidson papers (RRFA 11) contains Davidson’s materials used to research, plan, and execute exhibitions and publications on Robert Rauschenberg, including Robert Rauschenberg: A Retrospective (1997) and Robert Rauschenberg: The Early 1950s (1991). The collection spans 11.5 cubic feet and contains materials such as correspondence, exhibition floor plans, interview transcripts, photographs, and research binders.
Interviews with Rauschenberg Friends and Associates
The Interviews with Rauschenberg Friends and Associates (RRFA 08) was project undertaken by Karen Thomas of Film Odyssey in 2010 at the request of the Robert Rauschenberg Revocable Trust. From 2011-2012, the project served as a preliminary effort to collect interviews that document Robert Rauschenberg’s history through first person accounts.
Finding aids or accession records are available for select collections.
- AV from Guggenheim Archives
- Bob Petersen donation of Rauschenberg papers
- Christopher Rauschenberg photographs
- Douglas Maxwell records on The Other ROCI, Arena, BBC Films
- Ed Chappell archive of Robert Rauschenberg photographs
- Fredericka Hunter donation of Trisha Brown dance performances
- John Tanaka collection on Robert Rauschenberg
- Tatyana Grossman and ULAE collection on Robert Rauschenberg
- Ullens Oral History Project with Chinese Artists
- University of Southern Florida (USF) GraphicStudio Photographs
The Research Files (ACC 14) contain reproductions of archival materials related to Rauschenberg that exist in other collections and have been collected by Rauschenberg Foundation staff. There are no originals. Highlights include Rauschenberg's Black Mountain application and report cards, military records, and select early correspondence.