Three Questions with Dan Jacobs

Curator of the Museum of Outdoor Arts' new exhibition, "Robert Rauschenberg: Reflections and Ruminations"

Rauschenberg Soviet American Array VII. Courtesy of Mountaineers Books.

Robert Rauschenberg, a key figure in the Pop art movement of the 20th century, has a new solo exhibition at the Museum of Outdoor Arts that presents over 50 pieces from the artist’s career. We asked exhibition curator Dan Jacobs about this unique show, which runs from Feb. 24 to June 13.

Who was Robert Rauschenberg and why is his work relevant today?
He helped create Pop art in the early ’60s with very subtle, warm, and even poetic uses of pop culture. He commented on over-consumption and our lack of environmental awareness by drawing attention to the beauty that could be found even in discarded materials, which he sometimes actually retrieved from the dump.

What are some special pieces to look for in the exhibit?
Pegasits is a large piece silkscreened onto a highly polished steel surface that acts as a mirror, so the visitor becomes part of the show. It brings together painting, printing, photography, and sculpture in what Rauschenberg called a combine.

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What distinguishes this exhibition from Rauschenberg that have come before?
Regionally, there hasn’t been a solo show of Rauschenberg’s work since the early 1980s. Also, we’ve had outstanding cooperation from Universal Limited Art Editions, the fine art print studio where Rauschenberg worked for over 45 years.