Sara Kirschenbaum
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Remembering Robert Rauschenberg

Posted Thursday, Jun 05th, 2008 at 1:10pm

On May 12, 2008 my brother’s father, Robert Rauschenberg, died after making the decision to get off life-support. I’m sad for him, my brother and my mother. Bob’s light shined in sideways on my life. There is no word for his relationship to me – he’s not a step-father or in-law. He is simply my brother’s father. As I was growing up in NYC, we occasionally visited his house, saw his work, participated in his happenings and felt his charisma, talent and, for me, his distance from me. He gave me a couple of presents. One was a mechanical cow which I named “Mooey.” Mooey mooed and walked and swung his head from side to side. He eventually broke but I held onto his udder for years until I finally shoveled out the clutter in my life. Bob also painted me a toy piano when I was little. It had a nice window so you could see its inner workings and he painted it “day glo” colors. I’m not sure what happened to it. The last present Bob gave me was two years ago when I took my kids to NYC to go to his opening at the Met. At a party at his house he blew me a kiss when I was leaving.

I appreciate his brute, brave, talent; his joy in the world; and his enduring love for my mother and brother.

Rest in Peace R.R

26 comments

  1. Rachel Wrote on Tuesday, Jun 10th, 2008 at 9:04am

    I thought of your family when I heard the News (of course on the News). I have often wondered how it was for you (and your father) in that extended family. Your description of the sideways light was clarrifying. I remember Mooey, a fine specimen of a mechanical cow and utterly endearing. My condolences to your mother and brother.

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