Milton Ernest “Robert” Rauschenberg was born in 1925 and was an American painter and graphic artist whose works can be seen to be a precursor to the Pop Art movement. He lived and worked in New York City and in Florida until his death from heart failure in 2008.
As a young man, Rauschenberg initially enrolled at the University of Texas to study Pharmacy, but was then drafted into the U.S. army. He went on to study art at the Kansas City Art Institute and the Académie Julian in Paris, France. He is a decorated and renowned mixed media artist who has won countless accolades and awards, including the prestigious National Medal of Arts. His achievements have made him one of the most influential artists of the modern era.
He has worked in a variety of media and disciplines, including set design and costume design for performance art and dance productions. He is best known, however, for his combinations of painting and sculpture using found objects and collage techniques to create unique pieces. The most famous example of this style of work is Monogram, which features a stuffed goat encircled by a car tyre, mounted on to a painted base.
His work is described as Abstract Expressionism, though it has also been called Neo-Dadaist, owing to its similarity to the ‘readymades’ of Dadaist Marcel Duchamp.