Robert Rauschenberg | HOW TO SEE the artist with Charles Atlas

Robert Rauschenberg | HOW TO SEE the artist with Charles Atlas


The first time that I saw Rauschenberg’s work
is really lost in the fog of memory. I know it was some time you know, before I
was twenty. He was kind of an art hero for me. And the reason I went to see Merce Cunningham, which was the only dance I’d ever seen in my early years, was because I wanted to see Bob Rauschenberg’s
work. When I worked with Merce Cunningham I had
to reproduce some of Bob’s lighting designs and so I really respected him and I was kind
of overwhelmed always by his prodigious talent and his endless creativity and so productive. He did sets, lights, and costume, and the whole visual look which also inspired me to want to do the same thing I thought if he could do it so could I. So I did that for a while. For “Travelogue,” Bob supplied a bunch of costume accessories, and props, and set pieces. I do remember he felt that Merce was overusing
something in a way. And he said “Let’s get him…let’s get him to not…it’s too fussy. Let’s get him to stop that.” So I mean that’s where I picked up the fact
that he was not shy about giving his input. Oh, no. Not so much. I was thinking… This is too much. Too much draping? Yeah I think that we can’t do that. When I was invited to collaborate on this Rauschenberg show It was a forgone conclusion that I would do it because Rauschenberg was my favorite artist and had been always I mean what luck for me. Because it’s a chance to see the work a lot and close and I certainly wouldn’t have that reaction if it were someone else. So it seemed like the perfect thing for me to be doing And then it’s really been an eye opener for me just about exhibition design and how to think about a huge exhibition Well I think we should test it in space though Well I brought my computer cause I have everything laid out on my computer. I’m very conscious of my own participations and collaborations with dancers and that I’m using video to not upstage the dance. And that’s the continual problem because it’s very easy to do. And I thought he had the…he must have had the same feeling. He didn’t want to take over because the dancing is beautiful and the dances are right there so I thought he’d made the perfect set. I’m just wondering if you want to put something
on the floor to make it even? But maybe not. Actually the colors on the floor are pretty good. Yeah I love it actually. I think people are just going to stay here mesmerized Bob Rauschenberg really set an example for
collaborators about how you could be actively engaged with other artists and other artists
and other media. I think my work is influenced by the spirit of Bob’s work Nine Evenings is an event that took place in 1966 and it was the first time that there was a major collaboration between technology, the engineers at Bell Labs and artists. Billy Kluver, who organized it selected a handful of very well known artists at the time and invited them to collaborate with engineers The events were major New York City art events that everyone went to I suppose. and they took place over nine evenings and ten artists and I guess there were several events per evening Everyone approached it differently When I look at the documentation, everything raw raw technology, raw ideas, really the beginning of something Part of my mission with my own work is I’ve done a huge body of work of films and videos and I’m now interested in showing them in exhibition spaces So I kind of explode them and make them a walkthrough experience. So I approached this the same way. It’s a body of material that you want people to experience something about and the documentation is kind of poor. It’s very interesting, but but how to make it something that you want to look at so that’s sort of the challenge I see things the way I see them as a time based media maker. And because of all my experience working on the stage I have a theatrical sense of how you can do a complete environment and what lighting brings. I mean all the elements because I worked so long in collaboration with dance on the stage. To me the work doesn’t seem old. It’s in example that you can make work that lives on Just the whole process has been really interesting Making an exhibition and seeing how an exhibition is made and all the care that goes into it. It’s been life changing for me

5 thoughts on “Robert Rauschenberg | HOW TO SEE the artist with Charles Atlas

  1. Interesting

  2. he got the gosha tee on too

  3. Inspirational. I might take a visit to the museum.

  4. Abstract art has 2 preconceived notions, Beauty and balance.

  5. just fascinating ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

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