Rauschenberg


If you are interested in learning more about the life and work of Robert Rauschenberg a good book to start with would be, Off the Wall: A Portrait of Robert Rauschenberg by Calvin Tomkins. It is a very readable and informative book on the early life and work of Rauschenberg.

Other books that I highly recommend are, Robert Rauschenberg Combines, published by the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles and Steidl Verlag (if you are interested in book design check out www.steidlville.com).It can only be described as a work of art in itself. The illustrations are in lavish full colour showing many details of important works, and the essays are readable and informative. It is simply a breathtaking work on one of the most influential artists of the 20th century.

Duchamp, A Biography, by Calvin Tomkins. Marcel Duchamp and Robert Rauschenberg were close friends, and supporters of each others work.

Note to self, I really should remember the s and stop spelling his name Rauchenberg.

Working


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I am working on a new image comprised of three panels with a side framing device to unite the composition. I am using a dark pallet of umber, ochre, black, and a dark muddy green. I want to create a heavy brooding mood with this painting.
The surface I am reaching for could best be described as encrusted. This doesn’t sound too appealing, but what I want is something that looks old and crude. I build up layers of paint, then I place a layer of newspaper on the surface; the newspaper sucks up oil from the paint. When I pull the newspaper off I scape any paint from it, and this paint I mix together and the muddy colour is added to the surface of the painting. I very much like the crude matte surface that results from this progress, I am aware that I risk disaster in the long-term by doing this, some cracking will most likely occur or the paint might actually fall off. Maybe then the painting could be considered done!

I don’t know why I am no longer interested in my old bright colours and where this attraction to earth tones has come from but I am finding the change very stimulating (also these new colours are much cheaper).