A Letter From The Publisher, Nov. 29, 1976

Critics, according to some of their own critics, should not fraternize with the subjects of their criticism. TIME Senior Writer Robert Hughes does not agree. "The point is to learn more than you knew before," he says, "and I've never met an artist who didn't shed some light on his or her own work." So, in preparing for his appraisal of Artist Robert Rauschenberg—who is not only the subject but also the designer of this week's cover, a collage commissioned by TIME—Hughes spent a week in Captiva, Fla., as a member of Rauschenberg's household....

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