At Tate Modern

Hal Foster

Hal Foster reviews the Robert Rauschenberg exhibition at Tate Modern.

‘He has created more than any artist after Picasso,’ Jasper Johns said of Robert Rauschenberg, his one-time partner, and the Rauschenberg retrospective now at Tate Modern (until 2 April) fully attests to the sheer abundance of his six-decade career (he died in 2008). There are impressive inventions here, such as his extravagant combinations of painting, collage and sculpture, as well as mixed experiments, such as his rambunctious forays into new media technologies, but there is a lot of recycling and wheel-spinning too. No review can take it all in, so I will focus on one early phase, a key moment when, after a brief sojourn in Rome and North Africa with Cy Twombly, another close friend, Rauschenberg returned to New York in spring 1953 and set up a studio on Fulton Street in Lower Manhattan.

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