Robert Rauschenberg
© Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation. Used by permission.

Reference URL

Robert Rauschenberg 1983
  • Artist Rooms
Robert Rauschenberg was a major American painter, sculptor and printmaker, whose radical combination of action painting with found objects in the 1950s helped prepare the way for Pop Art. Mapplethorpe portrays him as a worker in dark overalls. His outspread arms, open hands and compassionate facial expression make him look like a saint. Mapplethorpe did something similar in a photograph of the Italian artist, Francesco Clemente.

Glossary Open

Action Painting

A method of painting associated with the Abstract Expressionists, particularly Jackson Pollock, in which paint is thrown, dripped, and poured onto the canvas.

Found material

Existing objects or images that are incorporated into an artwork. A found object that is treated as an artwork without modification is known as a readymade.

Pop Art

An art movement of the 1950s to the 1970s that was primarily based in Britain and the United States. Pop artists are so called because of their use of imagery from popular culture. They also introduced techniques and materials from the commercial world, such as screen-printing, to fine art practice.


An image pressed or stamped onto paper or fabric. This encompasses a wide variety of techniques, usually produced in multiples, although one-off prints, known as monoprints, are also included. The term is also applied to photographic images.

Action Painting, Found material, Pop Art, Print


  • Acc. No. AR00216
  • Medium Photograph, gelatine silver print on paper
  • Size 47.70 x 37.70 cm (framed: 50.80 x 40.60 cm)
  • Credit ARTIST ROOMS National Galleries of Scotland and Tate. Acquired jointly through The d'Offay Donation with assistance from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Art Fund 2008