During the 1960s and 1970s, Ed Ruscha produced a series of 16 small, self-published books that became a catalyst for how artists could approach the book form. This reputation has grown through the subsequent decades, and his influence on book artists remains strong to this day to the extent that his books have been, and continue to be, appropriated across the world by successive generations of artists. Writing from a practitioner perspective, I will begin by looking at how Ruscha has become so influential to generations of book artists. I will look at what influenced him, and how he may possibly have appropriated the work of others. I will then focus in on the community of book artists who reference Ruscha’s books in their practice. The research of Ruscha’s books is embodied in each of these individual outcomes, but I will show that it is through the collective act and the bringing together of all of these books, through the community, that the work/s gain currency, strengthening both the Ruscha books and those that have come after.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited