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Standard—Figueroa St.

A work made of gelatin silver print, from "twentysix gasoline stations".
© 1962 Ed Ruscha.

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  • A work made of gelatin silver print, from "twentysix gasoline stations".

Date:

1962

Artist:

Ed Ruscha
American, born 1937

About this artwork

Ed Ruscha radically changed the basis for art with his photobooks, the earliest of which appeared in 1963 with the matter-of-fact title Twentysix Gasoline Stations. Photographed on Route 66 between Los Angeles, where Ruscha still lives and works, and his hometown of Oklahoma City, the book heralded fundamentally influential turns in contemporary art: to vernacular corporate architecture and the branding of public space; to critical and creative possibilities found on the interstate highway; and to the impersonal, banal, and random as sources of inspiration. Ruscha interspersed pictures of industry giants such as Standard, Shell, or Texaco with others of mom-and-pop stations. He never showed the photographs but instead presented the coolly designed books (eighteen in all, recently acquired by the Art Institute along with a selection of the original photographs) in galleries, where the asking price of a few dollars apiece confounded purchasers of his paintings and drawings; and at bookstores, where they failed equally to attract buyers for many years. Yet, by equating an artist’s book with a dime novel, Ruscha achieved his desire to “be the Henry Ford of book making.”

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Photography

Artist

Edward Joseph Ruscha

Title

Standard—Figueroa St.

Origin

United States

Date

Made 1962

Medium

Gelatin silver print, from "Twentysix Gasoline Stations"

Dimensions

19.1 × 24 cm (image); 20.3 × 25.2 cm (paper)

Credit Line

Photography Gala Fund; restricted gift of Martin and Danielle Zimmerman and the Comer Foundation

Reference Number

2012.118

Copyright

© 1962 Ed Ruscha.

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email . Information about image downloads and licensing is available here.

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