How Ed Ruscha Photographed Every Building On The Sunset Strip
BY JULIA WICK
For his iconic book “Every Building on the Sunset Strip”, Ruscha used a motorized camera to shoot a “long picture” of the Sunset Strip. (Via YouTube)
Contemporary artist Ed Ruscha has lived in Los Angeles for more than sixty years. Though he is surely one of our brightest art world luminaries, his work has done far more than just shape the meaning of L.A. art—Ruscha has fundamentally shaped the way we see the city itself, making art of our vernacular landscape and sanctifying the California mundane. We truly seeour palm trees, dingbat apartment buildings, billboards and gas stations in large part because Ruscha showed them to us.
In Ed Ruscha: Buildings and Words, a new short documentary commissioned by MOCA, director Felipe Lima presents the story of Ruscha’s art practice and immersion in Los Angeles, from his word paintings to his photographing of Los Angeles apartment buildings.
Narrated by Owen Wilson—who promises that he isn’t going to try and explain Ruscha’s work to us, just show us what there is—the mini-doc blends archival footage and personal photographs with new interviews, taking viewers on a rapid-fire, immersive tour through the work and obsessions of one of America’s most iconic living artists.