Robert Rauschenberg, (Port Arthur, Texas, 1925 – 2008, Captiva, Florida), American
Catastrophe (Arcadian Retreat)
inkjet transfer and wax on fresco panels
111in x 75in
One of the largest of the twenty-five works in Robert Rauschenberg’s Arcadian Retreat series, Catastrophe (1996). Comprising three plaster panels, the work has a post and lintel structure that evokes the classical art and architecture. Intermingling images of an urban building facade, rusty food cans, and a cast-off table. Musicians, animals, and blooming roses complete the composite landscape, suggesting a cycle of regeneration despite the ruin invoked by the work’s title.