Rusha’s bookmark project came with Louisa Guinness Gallery was a very close collaboration:
Ed’s work has always been some of my favourite. I love the landscapes, the light, the banal everyday objects infused with a witty comment or wise words. I found myself in Mexico City at the same time as Ed was opening an exhibition here. I didn’t know anyone well enough to introduce me to him directly, so going to the exhibition seemed like a good opportunity to make contact. My husband and I went to the museum late enough to catch him at the opening but early enough that he hadn’t already gone out for dinner. I knew what he looked like and gingerly approached. He was so kind and friendly and open to the idea of collaboration but hadn’t a clue how HE could make a piece of jewellery. I told him there was no rush and we stayed in touch. I threw many ideas at him – even had little pieces of wood cut that he could paint and we would make into jewels – but he didn’t bite on any of my them.
I remember the phone call. It was a miserable, wet and dark night in London and I was driving home. I answered the phone. ‘It’s Ed Ruscha here, I’ve had an idea’. – I pulled over and stopped the car. The rest is history!
Ed knew exactly what he wanted to do – create a bookmark – but wasn’t quite sure how to acheive it. My goldsmiths advised and we sent quite a few parcels across America with different gauge metals and different versions of his the much-appreciated drawing he had sent me by faxed me earlierfax. I liked the humour of his bookmark. What else could a book mark say other than ‘Here’?
We wanted to and present it in a very smart green felt pouch, and I spent a great deal of time visiting the ladies at the Royal School of Needlework at Hampton Court Palace, just outside London, making many versions. Finally, Ed was satisfied. When we added the gummed labels in the place of ‘ex libris’ labels with another of Ed’s witty texts - ‘This HERE book belongs to’ - all was complete. Each piece was signed on the back by Ed and numbered as part of an edition of 100.