Each Lightbox features a curated selection of artworks and archival materials, providing a focused look at central themes and topics of interest. Click “View All” to see the full selection of images and expanded text. 

Rauschenberg and Cunningham

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Rauschenberg’s collaborative relationship with choreographer Merce Cunningham 

  • Dance in America: Merce Cunningham Dance Company, 1977
    1977
  • Antic Meet (1958), performed in 1964
    1964
  • Travelogue MC 1977
    Excerpt from Merce Cunningham, The South Bank Show, 1980
    1980
  • Art of Performance
    Robert Rauschenberg: The Art of Performance, 1997
    1997
  • Merce Cunningham Dancing
    Antic Meet, 1958
    1958

Art For Good

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Art for Good is an initiative to bring Rauschenberg’s artwork–and his generous spirit– to a new audience through carefully curated partnerships with major brands. 

  • Rauschenberg Collage Stops Signs and Birds
    Overdrive
    1963
    1963
  • Sky Garden (Stoned Moon) 1969
    Sky Garden (Stoned Moon)
    1969
    1969
  • Banner (Stoned Moon), 1969
    Banner (Stoned Moon)
    1969
    1969
  • Watermelon Medley (Bifocal), 1982
    Watermelon Medley (Bifocal)
    1982
    1982
  • Sri Lanka VI, 1983
    Sri Lanka VI
    1983
    1983

Trisha Brown and Rauschenberg’s Creative Alliance

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Trisha Brown and Rauschenberg's life-long friendship and performance collaborations.

  • Black and White Photo of Three Dancers with Play Button
    Glacial Decoy (1979), performed in 1993
    1979
  • Image of Person Being Lifted by Three Men Onstage
    Set and Reset (1983), performed in 1996
    1996
  • Foret Forêt (1990), performed in 1993
    1993
  • Astral Convertible (1989)
    2017
  • If You Couldn't See Me Video
    If you couldn’t see me (1995)
    1995

Creative Synergy: Art and Technology

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Rauschenberg’s dedication to art and technology crossover

  • The Money Thrower for Tinguely’s H.T.N.Y. 1960
    The Money Thrower for Tinguely’s H.T.N.Y.
    1960
    1960
  • Art on Wheels
    Broadway studio, 1965
    1965
  • Metal Pieces Artwork
    Oracle
    1962
    1962–65
  • Preparing for 9 Evenings: Theatre & Engineering, 1966
    9 Evenings: Theatre & Engineering, 1966
    1966
  • Poster for 9 Evenings: Theatre & Engineering, 1966
    Poster for 9 Evenings: Theatre & Engineering
    1966
    1966

Rauschenberg as Choreographer

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Rauschenberg’s earliest explorations of avant-garde dance and performance 

  • "Myrna Loy Opens Canned Bayous"
    Performance film clips compiled by Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, 1997
    1963
  • Black and White Photo of Onstage Performance
    Linoleum, 1966
    1966
  • Audience Watches a Presentation in Auditorium
    Open Score, 9 Evenings: Theater & Engineering, 1966
    1966
  • Rauschenberg Archival Note
    Notes for Pelican (1963)
    1963
  • Rauschenberg Supplies List
    Spring Training prop list, 1965
    1965

The Black Mountain Years: Experiments and Collaborations

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Rauschenberg’s encounters and collaborations with other artists at Black Mountain were critical to the development of his artistic sensibility. 

  • White Painting [two panel]
    1951
    1951
  • Untitled [small vertical black painting], ca. 1951
    Untitled [small vertical black painting]
    1951
    ca. 1951
  • Untitled (Night Blooming) 1951
    Untitled (Night Blooming)
    1951
    ca. 1951
  • Robert Rauschenberg and Susan Weil
    Black Mountain College, 1949
    1949
  • This Is the First Half of a Print Designed to Exist in Passing Time
    This Is the First Half of a Print Designed to Exist in Passing Time
    1948
    1948

Transfer Drawings

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Rauschenberg’s transfer drawings combine imagery excerpted from printed mass media with hand drawn and painted passages to create pictorial poems.

  • Untitled (Mirror), 1952
    Untitled (Mirror)
    1952
    1952
  • Cup 1958
    Cup
    1958
    1958
  • Complete Relaxation, 1958
    Complete Relaxation
    1958
    1958
  • Hallucination, 1960
    Hallucination
    1960
    1960

Tethering: Wall to Floor — Painting to Sculpture

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Tethering wall and floor elements was a recurrent device used by Rauschenberg to blur and transcend the distinction between painting and sculpture.

  • Nettle by Robert Rauschenberg, 1960
    Nettle
    1960
    1960
  • Black Market
    1961
    1961
  • Blue Eagle, 1961
    Blue Eagle
    1961
    1961
  • Magician II, 1961
    Magician II
    1961
    1961
  • Slug, 1961
    Slug
    1961
    1961

From Red Paintings to Combines

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In this lightbox, the Red Paintings (1953–54) explore the combination of paint, collage, and found objects that anticipate the three-dimensionality of Rauschenberg’s celebrated Combines begun shortly thereafter.

  • Robert Rauschenberg Red Artwork
    Untitled (Red Painting)
    1953
    ca. 1953
  • Untitled (Red Painting), ca. 1953–54
    Untitled (Red Painting)
    1953
    ca. 1953–54
  • Red Painting, 1954
    Red Painting
    1954
    1954
  • Red Painting 1953-54
    Red Interior
    1954
    1954
  • Red Import, 1954
    Red Import
    1954
    1954

Posters

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This lightbox presents posters made for a variety of purposes over the course of Rauschenberg’s career: from those designed to advertise his own exhibitions and the work of his collaborators, to promotional pieces for the many social and political causes he supported.

  • Robert Rauschenberg Jewish Museum Poster
    Poster for Robert Rauschenberg, The Jewish Museum
    1963
    1963
  • Robert Rauschenberg Mixed Media Collage
    Poster for CORE (Congress of Racial Equality)
    1965
    1965
  • Dwan Gallery Poster 1965
    Untitled [self-portrait for Dwan poster]
    1965
    1965
  • Poster for 9 Evenings: Theatre & Engineering, 1966
    Poster for 9 Evenings: Theatre & Engineering
    1966
    1966
  • Earth Day Poster 1970
    Earth Day
    1970
    1970

Tabula Rasa

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While Rauschenberg is known as a brilliant colorist, this lightbox explores the artist’s periodic retreat to low- or no-color artworks throughout his career.

  • Rauschenberg Four White Squares
    White Painting [four panel]
    1951
    1951
  • Erased de Kooning Drawing, 1953
    Erased de Kooning Drawing
    1953
    1953
  • Untitled
    1955
    ca. 1955
  • Open Season
    1961
    1961
  • Baton Blanche (Cardboard), 1971
    Baton Blanche (Cardboard)
    1971
    1971

Paintings by Bob Rauschenberg at the Betty Parsons Gallery, New York

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This is a re-creation of Rauschenberg's first solo exhibition at the Betty Parsons Gallery, New York, May 14 - June 2, 1951.

  • 22 The Lily White, ca. 1950
    22 The Lily White
    1950
    ca. 1950
  • Mother of God
    1950
    ca. 1950
  • Crucifixion and Reflection, ca. 1950
    Crucifixion and Reflection
    1950
    ca. 1950
  • Untitled, 1951
    Untitled
    1951
    1951
  • Eden, 1950
    Eden
    1950
    1950