New York

Ed Ruscha

Castello Gallery uptown

Charles Sheeler, who was a photographer as well as a painter, is often hailed as the father of recent developments in photo-Realism. His true son and heir may be Ed Ruscha, a painter, draftsman, and photographer living in Los Angeles. One can’t help feeling their similarities in front of Ruscha’s 14 recent drawings of stained sheets of paper. Precisely toned in gunpowder, single or stacked, their sharp, clean linearity, lucid light, and distinct shadows recall Sheeler’s watercolors of sunlit factory walls. Their metallic silvery tonalities also conjure up his stark light contrasts.

Whereas Ruscha strives for an artless look in his photographs, his paintings have always been carefully composed and adjusted to the pictorial demands of flat surface and framing edge. Illusionism is indicated only to be contradicted in paintings like Standard Station of 1966 or The Los Angeles County Museum on

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