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In Focus: Ed Ruscha

Apr 9, 2013 - Sep 29, 2013
Ed Ruscha's art is characterized by graphic simplicity, playful humor, and a keen interest in the vernacular as it applies to both language and architecture. This exhibition explores his photography, including well-known photo-based book projects.
Ruscha moved to Los Angeles in 1956 to study design at Chouinard Art Institute. Throughout a career of more than fifty years, he has produced paintings, photographs, prints, drawings, and films that often reflect on the city's vernacular architecture, urban landscape, and car culture. Photography has always been central to his artistic practice, most notably for the slender, pocket-sized volumes that he began publishing in 1963 and his extensive documentation of Los Angeles streets, beginning with Sunset Boulevard in 1965. Several of the photographs that appeared in these publications became source material for works of art that he would realize in other media, either at the same time or years later—for example, the photograph of Standard Station, Amarillo, Texas, published in Twentysix Gasoline Stations and later abstracted in a well-known painting now in the Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College.

The works in this show are drawn from recent acquisitions of vintage prints by the Getty Museum and of Ruscha's Streets of Los Angeles Archive by the Getty Research Institute.
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