“My whole area of art has always been addressed to working with other people,” said Robert Rauschenberg (1925-2008). “Ideas are not real estate.” It’s this collaborative philosophy that inspired MoMA’s Robert Rauschenberg: Among Friends, the first retrospective of the American artist’s work in the 21st century. The museum calls the show an “open monograph,” with Rauschenberg’s work appearing alongside the art of his contemporaries. It’s a labyrinthine flow chart of ideas, which is also an apt way to describe his prints.
Just as Rauschenberg incorporated everyday objects into his iconic assemblages, he brought quotidian imagery crashing together through printmaking. He often incorporated his own photographs and found images, electrifying them with colorful, exuberant marks. In Rauschenberg’s prints, we sense his dual role as a disruptor of Abstract Expressionism and a progenitor of Pop Art. We’ve added two new prints by Rauschenberg to the Zane Bennett Contemporary collection. Scroll down to view Earth Day and Arcanum V, and click here to browse all of our artwork by Rauschenberg.
Arcanum V (from Arcanum Series), 1981
Color silkscreen with hand-coloring and collage on paper
Published and printed by Styria Studio, New York
#12 of 85
Signed and dated with edition in graphite lower right sheet; Styria
Studio blind stamp lower right sheet
Image/sheet: 22.5″ x 15.5″; Frame: 31.25″ x 24.25″
Earth Day, 1990
Color silkscreen and color pochoir on wove paper pencil
sheet: 64.25″ h x 42.75″ w overall (with frame): 68.25″ h x 46.5″ w
Rauschenberg was an avid environmental activist. In 1970, he created a print for the inaugural Earth Day. Twenty years later, he observed Earth Day 1990—which vaulted the celebration onto the world stage, with over 200 million participants—by creating this color silkscreen.