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Ed Ruscha and Some Los Angeles Apartments Paperback – 14 Mar 2013

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Product details

  • Paperback: 100 pages
  • Publisher: Getty Publications (14 Mar. 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1606061380
  • ISBN-13: 978-1606061381
  • Product Dimensions: 20.3 x 1 x 25.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 662,550 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


"A slim but essential volume. . . . As such examples of mid-century design disappear or fall into disrepair, the utilitarian clarity of these images make a book like "Some Los Angeles Apartments" a valuable document, and an unexpectedly moving one. What began as a perhaps ironic concept has, with the passing years, taken on the resonance of something lost to history."--"Spectrum Culture"

About the Author

Virginia Heckert is associate curator in the Department of Photographs at the J. Paul Getty Museum and author of the bestselling Irving Penn: Small Trades.

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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By AndrewArtist on 17 Sept. 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
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Amazon.com: 2 reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Ruscha real estate 27 Jun. 2013
By Robin Benson - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
'Some Los Angeles Apartments' (1965) was one of Rusha's sixteen slim booklets produced between 1963 and 1978. They all prominently feature snapshot photos and Rusha is quoted in the book's essay (interviewed by John Coplans in 1965): 'Above all, the photographs I use are not 'arty' in any sense of the word.' and 'I don't even look at it as photography; they're just images to fill book'. Considering how casually he dismisses his work it's amazing that these books of snaps have achieved an importance beyond their mundane appearance.

The book is published in conjunction with an exhibition of Rusha's apartment photos at the LA Getty Museum during 2013, the year marks the fiftieth anniversary of the first booklet: 'Twenty-six gasoline stations' in 1963. Editor Virginia Heckert's illustrated essay examines Rusha's work in relation to other location photographers like Carleton Watkins, Walker Evans, Robert Adams, Lewis Baltz, Stephen Shore, Bern and Hilla Becher and the New Topographics. She ends her essay with examples of work from photographers who have been influenced by Rusha (and obviously other photographers) including Eric Doeringer who, in 2009, re-photographed the locations in Rusha's original Apartments to produce an up-to-date version.

The thirty-eight photos in the book reveal domestic architecture over a wide area of LA: Malibu to Rosemead to Van Nuys to Long Beach and in keeping with Rusha's casual feel about photography they are mostly taken showing front and side, the sort of shot one would expect to see in real-estate ads though he frequently includes more road than would be necessary in a snap selling property. All of them are a long way from the formal style of images one would expect from the creative photographers I've mentioned.

The photos are one to a page with generous margins and to bulk out the book there are twelve blank pages mixed in with the thirty-eight. Printing is with an impressive three hundred screen on a silky matt art (surely making them some of the best printed snapshots ever).

The book is an interesting example of Rusha's on going influence, the Getty has an exhibition related to one booklet and earlier this year the MIT Press published VARIOUS SMALL BOOKS: Referencing Various Small Books by Ed Ruscha, which looks at how seventy-three photographers produced their own Rusha style books.
1 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Photographs 13 Sept. 2013
By KS - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I was hoping to see some photographs of the really beautiful, old apartment buildings, but I should have known from the artist that his eye would be drawn to those simple ones of that fifties, sixties era.
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