Can’t not, daily

Ed Ruscha made a clever statement using banal materials and simple words .



It is not that I have to do that. No one is twisting my arm, really.

It is not that I must do that, as otherwise public scorn would twist my neck.

It is not that I can do that, for I don’t know if I can, actually.

This is RESOLVE at its best.

This is determination of a man who can’t avoid responsibility – and he is not necessarily happy to assume it either.

It is easy to know resolve in action movies, when the setting includes a countdown bomb display with 30 seconds to go, and the hero decides to stay and disarm the ticker or die.

It is more difficult to recognise resolve In the real life, when men have to show heroic resolution in mundane environment. Such as their own kitchen and dining table.

Hence the table mat.

Is this great art?

It is a great joke by a very talented artist. And a very expensive piece of joke at that, sitting nicely between Picassos and Max Ernstes, even though I can’t imagine why it is seen as a surrealist object.

It is very real to me.

P.S. Some intellectuals believe one can only be seen as an intellectual if he or she knows how to pronounce “Ed Ruscha”. It is stupid. But, just in case, it is pronounced “Roo-SHAY”. Next time you meet someone intellectual, you’d know what to ask them. 


  1. my next association – I see it as a fresco on the headstone (along with the mat) : ‘He couldn’t not do that’. Already not funny but still thoughts provoking ) But I really loved the current version it hits the bull’s eye )

      1. I like the initial idea much more cause it sends us to the process, the ‘now’ moment. Thinking about the tombstone, the idea loses its importance I’m afraid. In the end it doesn’t mater if (s)he could or could not, do that something ‘good’ or ‘bad’. What makes sense – did this bring them happiness, their own individual happiness to justify their presence here for that long time ) if not – all the points burnt )) With this table mat – the game is in a process ) I like this piece so much, it’s definitely art for me.

It would be grand to hear from you now!

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