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Robert Rauschenberg

Irving Penn, 16 Jun 1917 - 7 Oct 2009
Robert Rauschenberg, 22 Oct 1925 - 12 May 2008
Gelatin silver print
Image/Sheet: 38.4 x 38.4cm (15 1/8 x 15 1/8")
Mount: 44.8 x 44.8cm (17 5/8 x 17 5/8")
Mat: 71.1 x 55.9cm (28 x 22")
Credit Line
National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution; gift of Irving Penn
Restrictions & Rights
© 2005 Irving Penn
Object number
Exhibition Label
Perhaps no other American artist of the past fifty years has experimented so creatively with such diverse materials and techniques as Robert Rauschenberg. Coming of age in the era of abstract expressionism, Rauschenberg sought during the 1950s to infuse art-making with new possibilities. In his so-called "combine paintings" of this period, he created collages and assemblages with objects he found in his lower Manhattan neighborhood. One famous sculpture included a stuffed goat with an old tire hanging around its neck. As he has exclaimed, "I'm for 'yes.' 'No' excludes. I'm for inclusion." Not content with one approach or one medium, Rauschenberg has been at the forefront of innovations in painting, sculpture, lithography, and performance. Renowned fine-art photographer Irving Penn created this portrait in 2005, on the eve of a major Rauschenberg exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Data Source
National Portrait Gallery
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National Portrait Gallery Collection