Prints, Drawings, and Photographs
PoolMade in United States, North and Central America
Edward Ruscha, American, born 1937
Gunpowder on paper
Currently not on view
1998-155-1Purchased with the Lola Downin Peck Fund and the Carl and Laura Zigrosser Collection (by exchange), 1998
LabelIn 1959 Edward Ruscha used flat, conventional typefaces for his first word pieces, meticulously rendering found words and phrases, which caused them to assume unexpected poetic, associative, or narrative connotations. By the mid-1960s he developed a new series called "wet words." In drawings such as Pool, the word seems to have been formed by the sudden splashing of liquid on the paper. Ruscha achieved this apparently accidental effect using a painstaking technique: he faintly sketched the image and incised the outlines on paper, then brushed on delicate layers of gunpowder wash and gunpowder, scraping out and erasing to create the areas of highlight.