Robert Rauschenberg's Visual Arts Term Paper

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Robert Rauschenberg, premier American visual artist, saw things differently than the ordinary human being. For Rauschenberg, mundane matter can be magically transformed onto canvas to convey something entirely different than it was intended for. Rauschenberg's works include elements of everyday life from street signs to magazine clippings. A Rauschenberg canvas begs the viewer to see things as Rauschenberg does: with humor, insight, and creativity.

Born in 1925 in Texas, Rauschenberg studied art formally in the United States and in Paris. However, his initial inspiration to become an artist arrived under unusual circumstances: while he was stationed on a naval base in San Diego, Rauschenberg visited the Huntington Library collection, which sparked a lifelong passion. Rauschenberg worked as an illustrator and window designer and rubbed elbows with other contemporary visual artists. Rauschenberg also associated with performance artists, musicians, and choreographers and was able to contribute to the American creative scene. Throughout his career, Rauschenberg has been able to make a living through his work, has enjoyed considerable fame, and has been active in promoting the arts politically.
Rauschenberg traveled throughout the world to promote the arts and encourage funding for arts programs.

3. Although he was traditionally trained, Rauschenberg had the foresight to predict and capitalize on transformations in artistic media and in the early 1960s experimented with silk screening on canvas and collage. The subject matter of Rauschenberg's collages, known as "combines" because of their multimedia, spans a wide range of elements but generally incorporates issues pertaining to modernity, urbanism, technology, and American popular culture. Thus, he captures familiar elements in unfamiliar ways, and transforms otherwise ordinary objects into magnificent pieces of art. For instance, with "Retroactive I," Rauschenberg places a blue-tinted photo of President John F. Kennedy in the center of the collage. The size of Kennedy's picture in comparison to the….....

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