106 South Street
Easton, MD 21601
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (EASTON-JANUARY 24, 2016)
Rauschenberg Lecture to Feature Former Senior Curator of Prints and Drawings at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation
On January 29 at 6 p.m., the Academy Art Museum in Easton, MD will feature speaker Don Saff, PhD, Artistic Director of ROCI, Director of Saff Tech Arts & former Senior Curator of Prints and Drawings at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation, as part of its Kittredge-Wilson Speaker Series. Saff will present, “Robert Rauschenberg and the ROCI Artworks,” based on the Museum’s current exhibition, Robert Rauschenberg: ROCI Works from the National Gallery of Art, which will be on display at the Academy Art Museum through March 6, 2016.
As one of America’s most iconic 20th century artists, Rauschenberg (1925 – 2008) was a painter and graphic artist whose early works anticipated the Pop Art movement. He is best known for his Combines of the 1950s, in which nontraditional materials and objects were employed in innovative combinations. Robert Rauschenberg: ROCI Works from the National Gallery of Art is the first exhibition of ROCI artworks in Maryland. The Rauschenberg Overseas Culture Interchange (ROCI, pronounced “Rocky,” the name of the artist’s pet turtle) was established in 1985 to enable and support Rauschenberg’s collaborations with artisans and workshops abroad and to promote world peace and understanding. Over a six-year period, Rauschenberg created works in host countries all over the world to be included in exhibitions in each country and donated a work of art to each location. The various exhibition catalogues included contributions by local poets, writers, and journalists.
Speaking about Robert Rauschenberg, Donald Saff, writes in the Museum’s Rauschenberg catalog, “As his art had no technical boundaries neither would he have geographic boundaries nor political agenda. He saw himself as a citizen of the world and wanted the same for all its inhabitants. And so, Bob visited people one at a time to understand them, their culture, their circumstance, and then display for them his understanding using their own images – their language with his syntax. He merely held up a mirror so that they could see themselves with the visual opportunities he provided.”
Announced at the United Nations in December 1984, ROCI involved the artist making and presenting work while traveling with a team of assistants through 11 countries, including China, Tibet, the U.S.S.R. and former East Germany, as a way to foster cross-cultural dialogue. Some works remained in their original sites as gifts and others traveled with the ROCI team to be shared with future participants. Rauschenberg personally funded the project, which concluded with the exhibition Rauschenberg Overseas Culture Interchange of over 125 works at the National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC, in 1991, attracting 414,000 visitors.
The cost of the lecture is $15 for Museum members and $20 for non-members. For further information or to register, visit academyartmuseum.org or call 410-822-2787.