Robert Rauschenberg, Samarkand stitches IV, 1988

Samarkand Stitches IV, a vibrant wall hanging made from sewn fabric and, printed with photographs and silkscreened, reflects the rich culture of the Silk Road city and showcases Rauschenberg’s approach to mixing media. Robert Rauschenberg (1925-2008) was a painter and graphic artist from the U.S. who played a pivotal role in the pop art movement. Renowned for his work across various mediums, including painting, sculpture, photography, printmaking, and performance, he is celebrated as one of the greatest collagists. In 1984, Rauschenberg initiated the Rauschenberg Overseas Culture Interchange (ROCI), a seven-year, ten-country tour aimed at fostering world peace and understanding. This global project involved collaborating with local artisans, learning traditional techniques, and creating multimedia works inspired by diverse cultures, culminating in a 1991 solo exhibition at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C.

Samarkand Stitches is a suite of wall hangings made from sewn fabric, printed with photographs then silkscreened produced after the artist visited the ancient Silk Road city. The vibrant panels are as much a representation of Samarkand’s culture as an expression of Rauschenberg’s aesthetic.

Robert Rauschenberg (1925 – 2008) was an American painter and graphic artist whose early works anticipated the pop art movement. He was also a sculptor and worked with photography, printmaking, paper making, and performance.

In 1984, Rauschenberg announced the Rauschenberg Overseas Culture Interchange (ROCI) at the United Nations.

A seven-year, ten-country tour to encourage “world peace and understanding”. He worked with local artisans to learn traditional artistic techniques and created multi-media works inspired by these surroundings that culminated with a 1991 solo exhibition at the National Gallery of Art in Washington D.C.. Samarkand Stitches was created as part of this tour.