Twentysix Gasoline Station by Michalis Pichler
Published by Printed Matter (2009)
Twentysix Gasoline Stations is Michalis Pichler’s homage to Ed Ruscha, who published his groundbreaking and highly influential Twentysix Gasoline Stations in 1962.
Pichler’s version offers a more modern update, examining twenty-six German gas stations all owned by the same company and all displaying the same signage and architectural elements. At first glance, all twenty-six images appear to depict the same pristine and brightly-colored generic structure. Only upon further examination, aided by Pichler’s captions, does the reader get the full extent of the joke, which is punctuated by the book’s final image: a disembodied hand holding an excerpt from Ruscha in which he explains ‘the eccentric stations were the ones I threw out’.