17th Oct, 2023 10:00

Modern and Contemporary Art

Lot 372


Ed Ruscha (American, b.1937)

Ed Ruscha (American, b.1937)
'Remember and Forget', 1986
lacquered wood, from an edition of 7
standing in five parts, each 199.5 by 76cm

Provenance: Sotheby's, London, 10 February 2016.

The work was proposed as an edition of 12 with 2 artist's proofs, but Ruscha closed the edition at 7 works and 2 artist's proofs.

Edward Joseph Ruscha IV (born December 16, 1937) is an American artist closely related to the pop art movement. Playful humour, graphic simplicity and his long-lasting interest in connecting the verbal and visual, allow his work to provide a new approach to the American pop culture scene. Ruscha grew up in Oklahoma City, and in 1956 he attended Chouinard Art Institute (now CalArts) in Los Angeles. He initially worked as a commercial artist, and swiftly claimed fame in the 1960s.

In ‘I Remembered to Forget to Remember’, 1984, he composes a double negative with an escape clause, groups them up and spreads them onto a five-panel screen. With red-yellow and blue-white gradient colours on each side alongside the text evokes a sensation of evanescing and emerging. The consideration he put on the particular size, font and placement of words strengthens the emotion to the meaning, like the way a poet considers a phrase. He glorifies the words beyond as mere texts, but as objects, with more dimensions and open to multiple sensual perceptions.

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Sold for £74,000

Condition Report

There is an area of restoration to the lower third of the composition on the blue side. This has been carried out to a high specification, please contact the department for details about the restoration that was undertaken.
Visibly you can see - there is some surface dirt with some light surface scratches.
Red side: Panel 1: There is a small crack to the top right corner. Panel 3: Close inspection reveals small losses to the top two corner tips which fluoresce darker under UV light. Panel 4: There is a crack to the top right corner and one in the orange pigment to the lower centre of the right edge. There is a 35cm crack to the left side edge of the panel (not the front) which runs above and below the bottom hinge. Panel 5: There is a 20cm long diagonal crack to the top left corner and a 22cm crack to the bottom left hand corner.
Blue Side: Panel 1: There is a crack to the overturn edge of the top left corner. Paenl 2: A 7cm scratch just above the upper right hinge and a further scratch halfway between the top and middle hinge. Panel 3: There is a crack to the overturn edge of the bottom right corner. Panel 5: There is a minute chip to the extreme bottom left corner tip and a few specks towards the top right corner. Restoration to this panel as mentioned above.
The surface has a high gloss finish.



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Auction: Modern and Contemporary Art, 17th Oct, 2023


London Viewing | Highlights

A selection of lots will be on view 21 September - 4 October at our London Gallery, 15 Cecil Court, London WC2N 4EZ, as follows:

Monday-Friday, 11am - 5.30pm 

Saturday, 1pm - 5pm

Sunday - Closed

For more information, please contact 0203 971 2500 | london@sworder.co.uk 


Stansted Viewing | Auction

Viewing will be held at our Stansted Auction Rooms, Cambridge Road, Stansted Mountfitchet CM24 8GE, as follows: 

Friday 13 October, 10am - 5pm 

Sunday 15 October, 10am - 1pm 

Monday 16 October, 10am - 5pm 

All lots are, however, extensively illustrated and carry detailed condition reports - see 'Condition report' at the foot of each lot description. 

The auction will take place at our Stansted Auction Rooms, Cambridge Road, Stansted Mountfitchet CM24 8GE.

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