The Gap in Between
"Painting relates to both art and life. Neither can be made. I try to act in that gap between the two." - Robert Rauschenberg
Research Paper Plan Due on Wednesday

Robert Rauschenberg, Bed, 1955.












Robert Rauschenberg, Bed, 1955.












Leda and the Swan
Robert Rauschenberg, Bed, 1955.
Cy Twombly, Leda and the Swan, 1962.











Influenced by John Cage's idea that art should "unfocus" the spectator's mind

Erased De Kooning

Robert Rauschenberg, Erased De Kooning, 1953.











Neo Dada = style of art which reinvestigates Dada's use of irony, found objects and banal activities as instruments of social and aesthetic critique

Target with Plaster Casts

Jasper Johns, Target with Plaster Casts, 1955.
Characteristics of Neo-Dada works:
  • Use of modern, everyday materials and popular imagery
  • Absurdist contrast
  • Denial of traditional concepts of aesthetics and beauty











"Junk Sculpture"

Louise Nevelson, Sky Cathedral, 1958.
John Chamberlain, Miss Lucy Pink, 1963.











Louise Nevelson, Sky Cathedral Southern Mountain, 1959.











In response to an exhibition of Louise Nevelson's work in 1946, a critic said, "We learned the artist was a woman, in time to check our enthusiasm. Had it been otherwise, we might have hailed these sculptural expresssions as by surely a great figure among the moderns."


Louise Nevelson, Gold Relief, 1964.











Man with the White Shoes

Man with the White Shoes

Robert Rauschenberg, Untitled
(Man with the white shoes) front view, 1954.
Robert Rauschenberg, Untitled
(Man with the white shoes) back view, 1954.











Man with the White Shoes

Man with the White Shoes

Robert Rauschenberg, Untitled (Man with the white shoes) (inside reflection), 1954.
Robert Rauschenberg, Untitled (Man with the white shoes) (detail of back), 1954.











"Though not visible in this image, the area between the wooden post and the rooster (a white Leghorn, or Plymouth Rock?) actually has four sides. Most of the images on these four surfaces are of women, including photographs of the artist's mother and sister. You know, between the title about female slaves, the girly pinups and the male chicken, one might be tempted to ponder on cryptic messages in here about gender and roles." -
Camp Iconography and Gender Performance

Robert Rauschenberg, Odalisk, 1955 - 1958.











Odalisk word play:


Odalisque = a female slave or concubine who tends to
the harem of the Turkish sultan
Obelisk = tall, thin, four-sided, tapering monument
which ends in a pyramidal top

Jean-Auguste Dominique Ingres, Grand Odalisque, 1814.
Robert Rauschenberg, Odalisk, 1955 - 1958.











Washington Monument












Robert Rauschenberg, Monogram, 1955 - 1959.











monogram = a sign of identity usually formed of the combined initials of a name
examples of mongrams
combine = a work (typically associated with Robert Rauschenberg) that combines ordinary objects and collage materials with abstract expressionist brushwork in new, unexpected ways











Monogram back

Robert Rauschenberg, Monogram (back), 1955 - 1959.