Edward Ruscha Tulsa Slut 2002

  • Not on view

The crude phrase at the bottom of this painting forms a kind of palindrome—a word, verse, or sentence that reads the same backward as forward. Ruscha began exploring the concept of the palindrome in his work in 2002, a palindromic year. Emphasizing the objectness of the phrase as a thing that can be manipulated and inverted in space, Ruscha pictures the words against a Rorschach-like mirrored image of a rugged mountain, further underlining the symmetry of the composition.

Gallery label from ED RUSCHA / NOW THEN, September 10, 2023 – January 13, 2024
Acrylic on canvas
63 1/2" x 6' (161.3 x 182.9 cm)
Gift of Jo Carole and Ronald S. Lauder and Committee on Painting and Sculpture Funds
Object number
© 2024 Edward Ruscha
Painting and Sculpture

Installation views

We have identified these works in the following photos from our exhibition history.

How we identified these works

In 2018–19, MoMA collaborated with Google Arts & Culture Lab on a project using machine learning to identify artworks in installation photos. That project has concluded, and works are now being identified by MoMA staff.

If you notice an error, please contact us at [email protected].


If you would like to reproduce an image of a work of art in MoMA’s collection, or an image of a MoMA publication or archival material (including installation views, checklists, and press releases), please contact Art Resource (publication in North America) or Scala Archives (publication in all other geographic locations).

MoMA licenses archival audio and select out of copyright film clips from our film collection. At this time, MoMA produced video cannot be licensed by MoMA/Scala. All requests to license archival audio or out of copyright film clips should be addressed to Scala Archives at [email protected]. Motion picture film stills cannot be licensed by MoMA/Scala. For access to motion picture film stills for research purposes, please contact the Film Study Center at [email protected]. For more information about film loans and our Circulating Film and Video Library, please visit https://www.moma.org/research/circulating-film.

If you would like to reproduce text from a MoMA publication, please email [email protected]. If you would like to publish text from MoMA’s archival materials, please fill out this permission form and send to [email protected].


This record is a work in progress. If you have additional information or spotted an error, please send feedback to [email protected].