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Images Inspired by Ed Ruscha's Admitted Love of Driving at Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth
Ed Ruscha, 150 Miles, 1989. Acrylic on canvas, 24 x 40 inches (61 x 101.6 cm). Collection of Richard Edwards, Aspen.
FORT WORTH, TX.- Since Ruscha’s first road trip from Oklahoma City to Los Angeles in 1956, the artist has continued to engage the images he has encountered along the roads of the western United States. Consisting of approximately 75 works, spanning the artist’s entire career, Ed Ruscha: Road Tested tracks key images inspired by his admitted love of driving. The exhibition is on view until April 17, 2011 at the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth.

“I like being in the car, and seeing things from that vantage point,” Ruscha has said. “Sometimes I give myself assignments to go out on the road and explore different ideas. My books are an example of that.” The exhibition, organized by Michael Auping, the Museum’s chief curator, includes many of the artist’s most famous books, including Twenty-Six Gasoline Stations, Real Estate Opportunities, Some Los Angeles Apartments, Thirty-Four Parking Lots, and the innovative panoramic Every Building on the Sunset Strip.

This multimedia exhibition also includes some of Ruscha’s most iconic paintings, such as the Standard Stations and the Hollywood Signs, as well as paintings inspired by street names and road signs. His exploration of the topography of greater Los Angeles is represented by paintings that depict aerial grids of the city, as well as various southern California horizons and sunsets.

Ed Ruscha: Road Tested also explores the artist’s lifelong fascination with cars through paintings, photographs, drawings, and the rarely seen film Miracle, which tells the story of a mechanic who is magically transformed as he rebuilds the carburetor on a 1965 Mustang. In describing the exhibition, Auping explains, “Ed’s work has always been associated with the theme of travel, but amazingly an exhibition that brings together all the images that have been specifically inspired by the road has never been assembled. As Ed has said, ‘I’ve always been in group “road” shows.’ Now he has his own road show.”





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