24
Sep
13

Exhibition: ‘In Focus: Ed Ruscha’ at the J. Paul Getty Museum, Getty Center, Los Angeles

Exhibition dates: 9th April – 29th September 2013

 

Ed Ruscha (American, born 1937) 'Contact sheet for Pacific Coast Highway' 1974

 

Ed Ruscha (American, b. 1937)
Contact sheet for Pacific Coast Highway
1974
Inkjet print
32.8 x 48.2cm (12 15/16 x 19 in.)
The Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles
© Edward Ruscha

 

 

“Yes, there’s a certain power to a photograph. The camera has a way of disorienting a person, if it wants to and, for me, when it disorients, it’s got real value.”

“My pictures are not that interesting, nor the subject matter. They are simply a collection of “facts”; my book is more like a collection of “Ready-mades”.”

.
Ed Ruscha

 

 

Cultural curiosities. A language of the street.

Dr Marcus Bunyan

.
Many thankx to the J. Paul Getty Museum for allowing me to publish some of the photographs in the posting. The rest I sourced from the internet (and spent hours cleaning) to make a better posting about the exhibition. Please click on the photographs for a larger version of the image.

 

 

Ed Ruscha (American, born 1937) 'Camera-ready Maquette for Every Building on the Sunset Strip' 1966

 

Ed Ruscha (American, b. 1937)
Camera-ready Maquette for Every Building on the Sunset Strip
1966
Gelatin silver print on board
63.5 x 92.1cm (24 15/16 x 36 1/4 in.)
The Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles
© Edward Ruscha

 

Ed Ruscha (American, born 1937) 'Beeline, Holbrook, Arizona' 1962

 

Ed Ruscha (American, b. 1937)
Beeline, Holbrook, Arizona
1962
Gelatin silver print
11.7 x 12.1cm
The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
© Ed Ruscha

 

Ed Ruscha (American, born 1937) 'Shell, Daggett, California' 1962

 

Ed Ruscha (American, b. 1937)
Shell, Daggett, California
1962
Gelatin silver print
11.9 x 12cm
The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
© Ed Ruscha

 

Ed Ruscha (American, born 1937) 'Standard, Figueroa Street, Los Angeles' 1962

 

Ed Ruscha (American, b. 1937)
Standard, Figueroa Street, Los Angeles
1962
Gelatin silver print
12.4 x 14.6cm
The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
© Ed Ruscha

 

Ed Ruscha (American, born 1937) 'Standard, Amarillo, Texas' 1962

 

Ed Ruscha (American, b. 1937)
Standard, Amarillo, Texas
1962
Gelatin silver print
11.8 x 12.1cm
The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
© Ed Ruscha

 

 

In Focus: Ed Ruscha, on view at the J. Paul Getty Museum, at the Getty Center, April 9 – September 29, 2013, offers a concentrated look at Ruscha’s deep engagement with Los Angeles’s vernacular architecture and the urban landscape. The exhibition is part of Pacific Standard Time Presents: Modern Architecture in Los Angeles, and opens simultaneously with Overdrive: L.A. Constructs the Future, 1940-1990, another exhibition presented at the Getty Museum as part of this regional initiative. The Overdrive exhibition also contains images by Ruscha.

One of the most influential American artists working today, Ed Ruscha moved to Los Angeles in 1956 and continues to live and work in the city, incorporating local architecture, streets, and even the city’s attitude into paintings, prints, drawings, and photographs that are known for their graphic directness. Beginning in the 1960s, he began publishing photo books and using photographs to document thoroughfares in the Los Angeles area.

“Throughout his career, photography has played an important role in Ruscha’s exploration of the vernacular architecture, urban landscape, and car culture of Los Angeles,” commented Timothy Potts, director of the J. Paul Getty Museum. “By bringing together photographs from our collection and archival materials from the Getty Research Institute, we have been able to present a much richer understanding of Ruscha’s work and process.”

Highlighting an important joint acquisition of the artist’s work by the J. Paul Getty Museum and the Getty Research Institute in 2011, this exhibition features a selection of vintage prints related to Twentysix Gasoline Stations (1963) and Some Los Angeles Apartments (1965), the original camera-ready maquettes for Every Building on the Sunset Strip (1966), and contact sheets from this documentation of the Pacific Coast Highway (1974). The exhibition is co-­curated by Virginia Heckert, curator in the Department of Photographs at the Getty Museum, and John Tain, assistant curator in Collection Development at the Getty Research Institute.

“Gas stations and apartment buildings are among the quintessentially Southern Californian motifs that feature in Ruscha’s work,” says Heckert. “The Getty Museum’s acquisition of photographs made in conjunction with his photo books of the early 1960s gives us the opportunity to share his enthusiasm for the logos, signage, and language that enliven even the most banal architecture.”

Adds Tain, “What’s exciting about the photography that came out of Ruscha’s documentation of the Sunset Strip is that it really altered the sense of what was possible with street photography, which had always been from the viewpoint of the pedestrian. Today we have the Google Maps roving fleet of camera cars, but Ruscha was doing this kind of photography more than forty years ago.”

The exhibition gives visitors the opportunity to appreciate Ruscha’s photographs not as halftone reproductions in modest, mass-produced books, but as prints of the period. One of the best known images included in the exhibition is Standard, Amarillo, Texas (1962), which Ruscha used as the basis for his iconic oil painting Standard Station, Amarillo, Texas (1963). Other unpublished images from the iconic series of gasoline stations will be on view as well. Also included are the original camera-ready maquettes and press pulls for Every Building on the Sunset Strip, Ruscha’s fourth and arguably best-known photo book. Due to light sensitive annotations, each panel will be on view for eight weeks. The complete set of three maquettes will be on view during the first week of the exhibition only, April 9-14.

On display for the first time is a selection of contact sheets of the Pacific Coast Highway, representing a small sample of this monumental undertaking. Ruscha’s documentation captures the dramatically different landscapes of both the view west toward the Pacific Ocean and the view east toward the cliffs. The Pacific Coast Highway is just one of several streets that Ruscha has photographed over the past four and a half decades, beginning in 1965 with Sunset Boulevard. These contact sheets are part of Ruscha’s Streets of Los Angeles archive, including thousands of photographic negatives, proof sheets, contact prints, and related documents and ephemera, which was acquired by the Getty Research Institute in 2011. Nearly sixty photographs were acquired by the Getty Museum at the same time, making the Getty a preeminent resource for understanding the role of photography in Ruscha’s practice.

In Focus: Ed Ruscha is co-organised by the J. Paul Getty Museum and the Getty Research Institute, and features 50 works from both collections.

Press release from the J. Paul Getty Museum website

 

Ed Ruscha (American, born 1937) '708 S. Barrington Ave. [The Dolphin]' 1965

 

Ed Ruscha (American, b. 1937)
708 S. Barrington Ave. [The Dolphin]
1965
Gelatin silver print
11.8 x 11.9cm
The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
© Ed Ruscha

 

Ed Ruscha (American, born 1937) '1018 S. Atlantic Blvd.,' 1965

 

Ed Ruscha (American, b. 1937)
1018 S. Atlantic Blvd.,
1965
Gelatin silver print
10.8 x 11.1cm
The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
© Ed Ruscha

 

Ed Ruscha (American, born 1937) '1323 Bronson' 1965

 

Ed Ruscha (American, b. 1937)
1323 Bronson
1965
Gelatin silver print
11.8 x 12cm
The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
© Ed Ruscha

 

Ed Ruscha (American, born 1937) '1555 Artesia Blvd.,' 1965

 

Ed Ruscha (American, b. 1937)
1555 Artesia Blvd.,
1965
Gelatin silver print
11.1 x 11.4cm
The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
© Ed Ruscha

 

Ed Ruscha (American, born 1937) '4489 Murietta Ave.,' 1965

 

Ed Ruscha (American, b. 1937)
4489 Murietta Ave.,
1965
Gelatin silver print
11.4 x 11.4cm
The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
© Ed Ruscha

 

Ed Ruscha (American, born 1937) '5947 Carlton Way' 1965

 

Ed Ruscha (American, b. 1937)
5947 Carlton Way
1965
Gelatin silver print
11.9 x 12cm
The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
© Ed Ruscha

 

Ed Ruscha (American, born 1937) '6565 Fountain Ave.,' 1965

 

Ed Ruscha (American, b. 1937)
6565 Fountain Ave.,
1965
Gelatin silver print
11.8 x 11.8cm
The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
© Ed Ruscha

 

Ed Ruscha (American, born 1937) '10433 Wilshire Blvd.,' 1965

 

Ed Ruscha (American, b. 1937)
10433 Wilshire Blvd.,
1965
Gelatin silver print
11.7 x 11.8cm
The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
© Ed Ruscha

 

Ed Ruscha (American, born 1937) '818 Doheny Dr.,' 1965

 

Ed Ruscha (American, b. 1937)
818 Doheny Dr.,
1965
Gelatin silver print
11.6 x 11.7cm
The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
© Ed Ruscha

 

Ed Ruscha (American, born 1937) '3919 N. Rosemead Blvd.,' 1965

 

Ed Ruscha (American, b. 1937)
3919 N. Rosemead Blvd.,
1965
Gelatin silver print
12 x 12cm
The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles
© Ed Ruscha

 

 

The J. Paul Getty Museum
1200 Getty Center Drive
Los Angeles, California 90049

Opening hours:
Tues – Friday 10am – 5.30pm
Saturday 10am – 9pm
Sunday 10am – 9pm
Monday closed

The J. Paul Getty Museum website

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Dr Marcus Bunyan

Dr Marcus Bunyan is an Australian artist and writer. His art work explores the boundaries of identity and place. He writes Art Blart, a photographic archive and form of cultural memory, which posts mainly photography exhibitions from around the world. He holds a Dr of Philosophy from RMIT University, Melbourne, a Master of Arts (Fine Art Photography) from RMIT University, and a Master of Art Curatorship from the University of Melbourne.

Marcus Bunyan black and white archive: ‘Orphans and small groups’ 1994-96 Part 2

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