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born in AD •
artist, art connoisseur
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18 months Rauschenberg created 34 illustrations to Dante's Hell, using the technique of decal. Each illustration need to read vertically from top left corner to the lower right as divided into episodes of narrative in which events flow into each other. The characters are presented selected from magazines, photos of athletes, politicians and astronauts. Dante and his guide Virgil come to the Ninth circle of Hell. Dante appears in the upper left corner as a man wrapped in a towel. The keepers of Hell described in the poem as frightening giants, shown below right as the Olympic athletes standing on the podium. Great chain indicates the strength of giants, and also reminds us that they are chained for their sins.

Under the chain - tiny figures of the two poets, which is lowered into the well. Using familiar images to illustrate a classic text about the search for divine truth, Rauschenberg combines high and low, reality and fiction, past and present.

Creating these illustrations, the artist cut out pictures from magazines, covered them with chemical solvent and applied to the paper facedown. The reverse of the clippings he worked with a pen, so the image is transferred to paper. Finally, it covers the image with a thin layer of gouache and applied pencil strokes, expressing a certain mood or emotional state.
Robert Rauschenberg. Canto XXXI: the Central pit of Evil Cracks giants. (Illustration to Dante's Hell)
Canto XXXI: the Central pit of Evil Cracks giants. (Illustration to Dante's Hell)
Robert Rauschenberg
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