Photographs without Frontiers: Rauschenberg, Warhol, Hamilton and Photography

Graham Smith*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper is concerned with the roles played by photographs in the creation of fresh images. After touching on the impact made by Northern European paintings and prints on the development of Renaissance art in Italy, it examines broadly the usefulness of works of art on paper - including photographs - in disseminating local styles and subject matter. The body of the paper examines how Robert Rauschenberg, Andy Warhol and Richard Hamilton appropriated photographic images in the 1950s and 1960s, and asks to what extent such borrowed images continued to resonate when imported into different milieus. In essence, the paper asks whether those images continued to 'pierce', 'prick' or 'bruise' the viewer in their new environments - to borrow terms Roland Barthes employed to characterise the effect of the punctum. The paper also suggests that on occasion the new work of art may supersede the regional nature of its source materials, giving the originating images a global currency that transcends their origins.

Original languageEnglish
Article number936886644
Pages (from-to)123-141
Number of pages19
JournalHistory of Photography
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2011


  • Etienne-Jules Marey (1830-1904)
  • Georges Demeny (1850-1917)
  • Frank Powolny (1902-1986)
  • Robert Rauschenberg (1925-2008)
  • Marilyn Monroe (1926-1962)
  • Andy Warhol (1928-1987)
  • Charles Moore (1931-2010)
  • Richard Hamilton (born 1922)
  • Gene Conley (born 1930)
  • Wes Santee (born 1932)
  • Mick Jagger (born 1943)
  • Rolling Stones
  • Birmingham AL
  • civil rights
  • Kent State shootings
  • LIFE
  • Look
  • Sports Illustrated


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