Robert Kushner (b. 1949) A founding member of the Pattern and Decoration
movement, Kushner illuminated a wide spectrum of work from white drawings
completed on walls to paintings on stitched together pieces of fabric to large-scale
Kushner started his formal education at the University of California at San Diego; he
frequently studied with visiting lecturer Nan Goldin (1969-1970). Early 1970s found
Kushner living in the Big Apple; he initially found work as a restorer and collector of
Oriental carpets. Kushner and Goldin continued their relationship in New York, and
she eventually became his mentor. The team studied the fundamentals of decoration,
and in 1974 they traveled to Turkey, Iran and Afghanistan.
In the early 1970s, Kuzbekistan in which patterned fabrics are stitched together to
create wall hangings.
In 1985, Kushner flew to Japan where he was robustly fascinated by the country’s art.
In the late 1990s he began painting decoration on Japanese screens, which he has
recovered from thrift shops and auctions adding, “symbols of change and survival” to
Kushner’s latest work ventures into probability, a theory of John Cages’s in making
artwork. In an effort to memorialize the victims of September 11th. Kushner would drop
paper onto a canvas then paint where the papers had fallen.
In1990, during the extensive renovation of the lobby of 1270, Avenue of the Americas,
Rockefeller Center, a search attended by professionals
In 1990, during the comprehensive restoration of the lobby of 1270, Avenue of the
Americas, Rockefeller Center, a search regulate by professionals of the Museum of
Modern Art to locate an artist whose work was suitable for this project resulted in the
selection of Kushner. He did three winged sculpture pieces in bronze, with a bluegreen
patina, and he called them Sentinels because they are "silent, and heavy
guardians of the building.” Their placement is high on the walls, close to the ceiling
and near the entrance. Because of a special method of casting and hand-carving the
patterns, the overall affect is figures that "appear drawn or sketched like caricatures in
a golden dreamland."