Ed Ruscha

Hancock (Rooftops Series #4) (1961 / 2004)

About this artwork

This photograph is from Ruscha’s ‘Rooftops Series’, a set of four prints looking down on Los Angeles intersections from a high vantage point. Ruscha has worked in and based much of his work on the unique characteristics of the city since he was a student in the 1950s. He had been working for an advertising agency between North Flores Street and Beverly Boulevard when he took these shots in 1961, early in his career. They run 360 degrees around the roof of his office building where he took his lunch. This image captures a busy two lane street, where Ruscha’s own car was also parked. Although taken in 1961, this photograph was only printed as part of the ‘Rooftop Series’ portfolio in 2004, by which time it had become a memento of Los Angeles’ past.

see media
  • title: Hancock (Rooftops Series #4)
  • accession number: AL00238
  • artist: Ed RuschaAmerican (born 1937)
  • gallery: In Storage
  • object type: Photograph
  • date created: 1961 / 2004
  • measurements: 77.80 x 77.80 cm (frame 78.10 x 78.10 cm)
  • credit line: ARTIST ROOMS National Galleries of Scotland and Tate. Lent by Artist Rooms Foundation 2011
  • copyright: © Ed Ruscha.
This artwork is part of Artist Rooms

Ed Ruscha

Ed Ruscha

Ruscha was born in Omaha, Nebraska. He grew up in Oklahoma and studied in Los Angeles. Ruscha's work is diverse and experimental. Since childhood he has been interested in commercial art, in the form of advertising, comic books and magazines. This led to his first paintings featuring words, produced in the late 1950s. Ruscha is equally known for his books of deadpan photographs, such as 'Twenty-six Gasoline Stations' of 1963 and volumes of banal photographs of buildings. In his work Ruscha aims to challenge accepted concepts of language and meaning, often by combining unrelated words and images.