Lot 231: Robert Rauschenberg
Publicon--Station IV (Publicons)
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As often as he filtered traditional techniques to accommodate his artistic perspective, Rauschenberg also reached back into his own childhood memories. His Publicons series explores his relationship with religion, an ongoing spiritual study that began as a teenager when he wanted to become a preacher. Another series created with the help of Gemini, these are his take on the Stations of the Cross (He made seven Publicon editions, exactly half the number of stations as are in the Christian versions.) The word Publicons is a combination of “public” and “icon” because he intended that viewers push, pull, and open the doors to reveal “an enshrined object.” While it deals directly with Rauschenberg’s spirituality, Publicon--Station IV (1978) drolly addresses “the matter of spirituality – or lack of it – in contemporary culture.”
Kotz, Mary Lynn. Rauschenberg/Art and Life. New York: Abrams, 1990. Print. Davidson, Susan, and Walter Hopps. Robert Rauschenberg: A Retrospective. New York: Guggenheim Publications, 1997. Print.