Ed Ruscha

Oldsmobile (Motor City Portfolio) (2009)

About this artwork

Ruscha has brought together two of his great obsessions in this work, cars and words. It is one of a series of seven aquatint etchings on paper. Here he has reproduced the logo of the Oldsmobile motor car. He has spent much of his career exploring the vernacular language and culture of his home city in Los Angeles and here he draws attention to their obsession with car culture and consumerism. These car logos also recall Ruscha’s own frequently documented road trips around America.

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  • title: Oldsmobile (Motor City Portfolio)
  • accession number: AL00329
  • artist: Ed RuschaAmerican (born 1937)
  • gallery: In Storage
  • object type: Work on paper
  • medium: Etching
  • date created: 2009
  • measurements: 26.00 x 24.10 cm (framed: 31.20 x 29.60 x 3.80 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.