Dec 19, 2016

Sharon Ullman has been named Acting Executive Director of the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation following the announcement last week that Christy MacLear, who has led the Foundation staff since 2010, will be taking a position at Sotheby's. 

"Sharon was one of the first people Christy hired and she has served us brilliantly for more than six years, most recently as Chief Operating Officer," said Christopher Rauschenberg, chairman and president of the Foundation and the artist's son.  "Sharon knows every aspect of the organization and we are delighted to have Sharon's leadership, her depth of experience, and her strong commitment to my father's artistic legacy and philanthropic vision available to us during this transition period."

Rauschenberg extended his best wishes to MacLear and thanked her for her years of service.  

"Christy was instrumental in taking the Foundation from our early days as a 'foundation start-up' to the mature organization that the Foundation is today," Rauschenberg said. "There are three key elements of what we do – increasing access to Rauschenberg art and scholarship, operating a residency program for artists in Florida, and leading philanthropic initiatives that connect culture and creativity with education, climate change, and other important issues. Christy has helped us define and expand our work in all of these areas. We are appreciative of the magnificent work she has done and the solid foundation she has helped us lay."

The Foundation's Board has appointed a three-member committee to oversee the transition to new staff leadership, including the search for a successor to MacLear.

Michael Straus, former chairman of the board of The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts and a Rauschenberg board member since 2015, is chair of the transition committee. Christopher Rauschenberg and Elizabeth Glassman, president and CEO of the Terra Foundation for American Art and a Rauschenberg board member since 2013, also serve on the transition committee.

Dec 15, 2016

Courtesy BBC Arts

Robert Rauschenberg – Pop Art Pioneer aired on BBC2 on December 10 in a celebration of the work and life of the artist shortly after the Rauschenberg retrospective opened to the public at Tate Modern. 
In the film presenter Alastair Sooke traveled to New York and Captiva, Florida to talk to those closest to Rauschenberg to reveal the boundless curiosity and restless experimentation that kept him engaged over the course of his six-decade career. 
(For our UK based readers, you can view the full program on the BBC IPlayer)

Dec 1, 2016

Rauschenberg with transfer drawings by Jasper Johns


Robert Rauschenberg presents a holistic and multifaceted overview of the artist’s prolific career. In addition to key examples from Rauschenberg’s iconic “Combines” series, the exhibition showcases the artist’s innovative experiments with media appropriation, technology, and performance, as well as the global impact of his career, particularly through his close partnerships with artists across Europe, Asia, and Latin America.

Tate Modern’s presentation begins with an examination of Rauschenberg’s early works, which were largely influenced by his formative years at Black Mountain College, North Carolina, a hub of artistic innovation and experimental practice in the 1940’s and early 50’s. During this period, Rauschenberg first experimented with photography and performance, created the monolithic White Paintings (1951), and incorporated found materialsand media images into his solvent transfer drawings.

The retrospective also highlights and explore Rauschenberg’s work in performance, which was at the core of much of his artistic output. His involvement with performance began with his participation, alongside choreographer Merce Cunningham, in composer John Cage’s Theatre Piece #1 at Black Mountain College in 1952. Throughout his career, Rauschenberg not only designed sets, costumes, and lighting for Cunningham and other choreographers such as Trisha Brown and Paul Taylor, but he also performed and choreographed his own works such as Pelican in 1963, and Elgin Tie in 1964.

By 1970, Rauschenberg left New York and established a home and studio on Captiva Island, Florida, which would become his primary residence until his death in 2008. He continued to work until the end of his life, producing historically significant works throughout his mid- to late career, including the Cardboards, 1971-72, Jammers, 1975- 76; Gluts, 1986-94; and Anagrams, 1995–97. Robert Rauschenberg at Tate Modern culminates with works from these later series, as well as ephemera from the Rauschenberg Overseas Culture Interchange (ROCI) – a project in which Rauschenberg traveled to ten countries outside the U.S. to collaborate with local artists in each region. ROCI became Rauschenberg’s primary preoccupation between 1984 and 1991 and was a tangible expression of his belief in art as a catalyst for global dialogue. Mounting an exhibition of his work in each country – often where freedom of speech and artistic expression had been suppressed – Rauschenberg’s aim was to inspire crosscultural exchanges and achieve a mutual understanding through art.