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Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Robert Rauschenberg

“A Conversation Between Robert Rauschenberg, Calvin Tomkins & Paul Schimmel”

(from left to right: Paul Schimmel,
Robert Rauschenberg and Calvin Tomkins)

Robert Rauschenberg died yesterday.
In May 2006, I went with a group of artists friends to the MOCA in Los Angeles to see “Robert Rauschenberg: Combines",
an exhibition organized by chief curator Paul Schimmel. We stayed in Los Angeles for the weekend. Saturday night was the opening and Sunday there was “A Conversation Between Robert Rauschenberg, Calvin Tomkins & Paul Schimmel”. I remember a very good time. Rauschenberg, despite his illness (he was in a wheel chair and one of his arms seemed to be very stiff), was very cheerful, happy, full of humor. We all laughed together. Rauschenberg, Paul Schimmel and Calvin Tomkins seemed extremely happy to be there and to share the moment.

The Centre Pompidou, Paris, banner for “Robert Rauschenberg: Combines"

“Robert Rauschenberg: Combines" at the Centre Pompidou, Paris, december 2006

A few months later I was fortunate enough, being in Paris at the time, to have seen “Robert Rauschenberg: Combines" again in the Centre Pompidou. It was a gloomy day, and the exhibition brought me joy. The setting of the exhibition was completely different and so I saw it with news eyes.

I am happy to know that, even if Rauschenberg died yesterday, it is still possible to see his work. Something he left for us to enjoy for a long time. This is the miracle of art.

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