Edward Ruscha

Posted in Education, J. Paul Getty Museum

Will the Real Los Angeles Please Stand Up?

Reed Johnson (moderator) with, from left, filmmakers Thom Andersen and William Friedkin and film critics Richard Schickel and Kenneth Turan

Impersonal concrete sprawl. A surfer’s paradise. A dark battleground of grisly crimes. Los Angeles is a regular character in the movies, on TV, in books, and in art, but its identities are as numerous as its roles. The recent conference… More»

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Posted in Art, Getty Research Institute, J. Paul Getty Museum, Photographs, Film, and Video

Ruscha Sees L.A.

Shoot from Hollywood Blvd. / Ed Ruscha
Shoot from Hollywood Blvd., Ed Ruscha, 1973. Contact sheet. Part of the Streets of Los Angeles Archive, The Getty Research Institute. © Ed Ruscha

The Getty has just acquired photographs by Ed Ruscha. Seventy-four prints, including depictions of gas stations from Los Angeles to Oklahoma City along Route 66, sidewalk views of buildings that were included in his self-published books Some Los Angeles Apartments and… More»

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      #ThyCaptionBe: Minty Fresh Inspiration

      You captioned this detail. And we’re revealing the full story now.

      Spit-take baptism or the fresh to death Patron Saint of Minty Fresh Breath? It’s really a depiction of Saint John receiving direct inspiration from God.

      Here’s the full story:

      The Bible recounts many examples of direct inspiration from God, but it doesn’t ever explicitly mention a blinding blue light shooting directly from heaven to the mouth of Saint John, as is depicted here. Nor does Saint John ever mention the uncomfortable sensation of being surrounded by a purple amoeba. 

      In this image that begins the Gospel of John in a Gospel book, the use of bright colors and strong shapes creates a sense of surrealism

      The illumination’s dynamic energy, however, is typical of artists working in the seventeenth century in the Armenian enclave of New Julfa in Isfahan.

      #ThyCaptionBe is a celebration of modern interpretations of medieval aesthetics. You guess what the heck is going on, then we myth-bust.


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