Various Small Books

Various Small Books

MIT Press (MA) | December 1, 2012 | 287 pages

In the 1960s and 1970s, the artist Ed Ruscha created a series of smallphoto-conceptual artist's books, among them Twentysix Gas Stations, Various Small Fires,Every Building on the Sunset Strip, Thirtyfour Parking Lots, Real Estate Opportunities,and A Few Palm Trees. Featuring mundane subjects photographed prosaically, withidiosyncratically deadpan titles, these "small books" were sought after, collected, andloved by Ruscha's fans and fellow artists. Over the past thirty years, close to 100 other smallbooks that appropriated or paid homage to Ruscha's have appeared throughout the world. This bookcollects ninety-one of these projects, showcasing the cover and sample layouts from each along witha description of the work. It also includes selections from Ruscha's books and an appendix listingall known Ruscha book tributes. These small books revisit, imitate, honor, and parody Ruscha inform, content, and title. Some rephotograph his subjects: Thirtyfour Parking Lots, FortyYears Later. Some offer a humorous variation: Various Unbaked Cookies(which concludes, as did Ruscha's Various Small Fires, with a glass of milk),Twentynine Palms (twenty-nine photographs of palm-readers' signs). Some saysomething different: None of the Buildings on Sunset Strip. Some reach for aconnection with Ruscha himself: 17 Parked Cars in Various Parking Lots Along Pacific CoastHighway Between My House and Ed Ruscha's. With his books, Ruscha expanded the artist'sfield of permissible subjects, approaches, and methods. With VARIOUS SMALL BOOKS,various artists pay tribute to Ed Ruscha and extend the legacy of his books.

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ISBN: 9780262018777

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