Then & now: Hollywood Boulevard 1973-2004. Signed. Edward Ruscha.
Then & now: Hollywood Boulevard 1973-2004. Signed

Then & now: Hollywood Boulevard 1973-2004. Signed

Göttingen, Germany: Steidel, 2005. On Sunday, July 8, 1973, Ed Ruscha cruised the 6.5 miles of Hollywood Boulevard in a pickup truck, from Sunset Plaza Drive high above the Sunset Strip to Hillhurst Avenue, where it merges with Sunset Boulevard. Then he turned around and drove back. A camera mounted on a tripod in the bed of the pickup took a continuous sequence of black-and-white 35-mm frames documenting the north and then the south sides of the street. This was similar to the procedure he had followed in 1966 to produce his justly famous Every Building on the Sunset Strip, but the Hollywood Boulevard publication did not appear then. On Saturday, June 5, 2004, the journey was repeated, but this time using color film, with Hans Grunert as the photographer and a larger crew. The result is this mammoth book, with thousands of photographs arranged on 152 unnumbered pages in four strips 4.8 mm / 1-7/8 in. wide, as follows: north black-and white 1973; north color 2004; south color 2004; south black-and-white 1973. What a record of my hometown. I should keep it, but here it is, boldly signed, no less. "Sell it und veep," as the old German bookseller told me. For those who savor such details, the 1973 record shows several good bookshops, including the original narrow Heritage Book Shop owned by Ben and Lou Weinstein at 6707 Hollywood Boulevard four doors west of Las Palmas; at the west end of that block, the great Pickwick Books; to the east between Las Palmas and Cherokee are Book City, Musso & Frank Grill, Hollywood Book Shop, and Cherokee Books; with Larry Edmunds Cinema Bookshop opposite on the south side of the street. I needed a magnifying glass to read the Heritage sign, and I knew where to look—next to the pizza place. 6707 also is the location Raymond Chandler used for A.G. Geiger's shady bookshop in "The Big Sleep." The book itself is bound in white cloth blindstamped with "Then & Now." It is housed in a pasteboard slipcase with the title page printed on the front. The covers measure 32 x 44.5 cm / 12.6 x 17.5 in. (oversquare). It will weigh over 7 pounds wrapped for shipping. The signature (see scan of most of the huge page) is on the flyleaf. There is no text, other than a half-title and blank, a title page, and on the verso, a key to the four strips of illlustrations; following the last pictures at Hillhurst Avenue are another key and two leaves providing credits and publishing information. Minor fault on the slipcase; otherwise fine. ISBN 3-86521-105-4

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Price: $550.00