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Ed Ruscha, That Was Then This Is Now #1, 1989, acrylic on canvas, 32 x 46".

Ed Ruscha

Ed Ruscha, That Was Then This Is Now #1, 1989, acrylic on canvas, 32 x 46".

IN JULY, an exhibition of my work opened at the Kunsthaus Bregenz in Austria. All four floors of the museum are related to my work with books. Everything from photography to film to paintings and drawings, and of course actual books—all of it is tied to my background in working with language and with graphic design.

In fact, I was Artforum’s layout designer for a few years beginning in 1964, after the magazine moved from San Francisco to LA. I would work a long weekend about once a month, pasting the magazine together with rubber cement and scissors and all that. That was the analog world I lived in. Even today I don’t use digital technology, particularly. I don’t do Twitter or any of that kind of stuff. I’m still stuck in the world of paint, so to speak. My liquid-word paintings [1966–69], for instance, probably had a lot to do with my thinking about the still life, though

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