I’m fully aware you are not supposed to take photos in exhibitions such as Robert Rauschenberg at the Tate Modern but it’s far too tempting not to. Potentially the best exhibition I’ve been to this year, aside from Magritte at the Pompidou Centre, Paris. I’ve always liked the work of Rauschenberg but I don’t think I fully appreciated the incredible materiality of his works until I saw this retrospective. I was previously aware of his silkscreens, including the famous image of JFK, Retroactive II, 1964, but surprisingly not of works such as Bed, 1955, or Charlene, 1954. After viewing pieces such as these I have found a plethora of material dense works to draw inspiration from for my own practice. I would highly recommend this exhibition to anyone as it is full of the diverse and varied mediums and styles that Rauschenberg employed.
The only image I managed to capture from the whole exhibition just happened to be one of the most famous. Although not necessarily my favourite work, which is undoubtedly Charlene, 1954, due to it’s incredible use of found objects and rich textures. This ‘Combine’ piece includes oil, charcoal, paper, fabric, newspaper, wood, plastic, mirror, and metal on four Homasote panels, mounted on wood with electric light.
Featured image : Charlene, 1954, Robert Rauschenberg