Robert Rauschenberg Borealis 1988–92
12 April – 31 May 2019
In collaboration with the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation, Thaddaeus Ropac Salzburg Villa Kast presented an exhibition dedicated to Robert Rauschenberg’s Borealis series.
Made between 1988 and 1992 in Captiva, Florida, the Borealis are considered to be one of Rauschenberg’s most experimental and innovative series. In these works, Rauschenberg characteristically silk-screened photographs taken during his ROCI tour (Rauschenberg Overseas Culture Interchange, 1984–91) onto brass, copper and bronze plates, adding tarnishing agents which would produce chemical reactions on the surface and alter the perception of the motifs. With their subtly reflective surfaces, the Borealis paintings changed according to each viewpoint, alluding to the ever-changing landscape of modernity.
Between 1984 and 1991 Robert Rauschenberg embarked on the ROCI project, travelling the world and exhibiting in eleven countries where artistic experimentation had been suppressed, including Chile, China and Cuba. During these trips, the artist had numerous encounters and made discoveries that allowed him to develop a new body of work, which brought together characteristic elements of his practice: photography, silkscreening, painting and experimental techniques.