Ed Ruscha - Contemporary Art Part II New York Friday, November 17, 2006 | Phillips

Create your first list.

Select an existing list or create a new list to share and manage lots you follow.

  • Provenance

    Leo Castelli Gallery, New York; Anthony d'Offay Gallery, London

  • Catalogue Essay

    For over forty-five years, Ed Ruscha has been an influential voice in postwar American painting, in addition to being one o contemporary art's most significant graphic artists. Operating withing a large scope of mediums including prints, canvas, books and film, the artist has distinguished himself as a purveyor of Pop, Surrealist, and Conceptual ideals, surpassing the boundaries of one particular movemnt. The present lot, "No Mercy," painted in 1997, is a formal representation of Ruscha's challenges with the modern landscape and conceptual balance of form and color.

    In his own words: "I dream of getting into paintings that are vertical, that are narrower than they are high, but most of my proportions are affected by the concept of the panorama. Like I say, I'm a victim of the horizontal line and the landscape which is almost one and the same thing to me. So I've eliminated a lot of unnecessary sky and unecessary ground. I find myself always coming back to the horizontal idea." (Ed Ruscha, quoted in R. Dean and E. Wright, "Ed Ruscha Catalogue Raisonné," New York, 2005, p. 10)

  • Artist Biography

    Ed Ruscha

    American • 1937

    Quintessentially American, Ed Ruscha is an L.A.-based artist whose art, like California itself, is both geographically rooted and a metaphor for an American state of mind. Ruscha is a deft creator of photography, film, painting, drawing, prints and artist books, whose works are simultaneously unexpected and familiar, both ironic and sincere.

    His most iconic works are at turns poetic and deadpan, epigrammatic text with nods to advertising copy, juxtaposed with imagery that is either cinematic and sublime or seemingly wry documentary. Whether the subject is his iconic Standard Gas Station or the Hollywood Sign, a parking lot or highway, his works are a distillation of American idealism, echoing the expansive Western landscape and optimism unique to postwar America.

    View More Works


No Mercey

Acrylic on linen.
24 x 19 in. (61 x 48.3 cm).
Signed and dated "Ed Ruscha 1997" on the reverse.

$70,000 - 90,000 

Sold for $84,000

Contemporary Art Part II

17 Nov 2006, 10am & 2pm
New York