DIRTY BABY (1977)
About this artwork
During the mid 1970s, Ruscha made a series of drawings in pastel using pithy phrases set against a field of a single colour. The sentences and phrases evoke American vernacular and slang, draw attention to a particular experience of the artist, or recall the excesses of Hollywood culture. Some of these works referenced lyrics from pop music while others were phrases that the artist made up. ‘Dirty Baby’ may be a line from a song or a movie.
- title: DIRTY BABY
- accession number: AR00058
- artist: Ed RuschaAmerican (born 1937)
- gallery: In Storage
- object type: Work on paper
- materials: Graphite and acrylic paint on paper
- date created: 1977
- measurements: 57.20 x 72.40 cm
- credit line: ARTIST ROOMS National Galleries of Scotland and Tate. Acquired jointly through The d'Offay Donation with assistance from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Art Fund 2008
- copyright: © 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.