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Ed Ruscha Collaborates with (RED) and Gagosian on Limited-Edition Scarf to Support the Fight to Deliver Equitable Access to COVID Relief

April 12, 2022

NEW YORK—(RED), the organization created by Bono and Bobby Shriver in 2006 to rally people and businesses to help end AIDS, has now added the COVID-19 pandemic to its fight. The same scenario that denied life-saving HIV medication to the world’s poorest countries is now being repeated with access to COVID relief. With the vast majority of the African population still unvaccinated and only one in seven infections detected on the continent, we must act now to deliver testing, treatment, and vaccines before more lives are lost. 

(RED) and Gagosian are pleased to announce the launch of a silk twill scarf by the revered American artist Ed Ruscha, produced in Italy by Massif Central. All of the sales will go to (RED), where the net proceeds raised will support the fight for equitable access to COVID relief in the world’s most vulnerable communities. Doubling the impact, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will generously match every dollar raised for the Global Fund.

Produced in a limited edition of 500, each signed and numbered, the scarf is priced at $1,200. It is available for preorder beginning today—and shipping at the beginning of May—exclusively in Gagosian’s online shop and at the gallery’s retail locations on Madison Avenue in New York and at Burlington Arcade in London.

More than three decades ago, Ruscha made the drawing Science Is Truth Found Out (1986), inspired by a phrase he saw inscribed in stone above the entrance to the science block of Los Angeles’s storied Hollywood High School. Taking this aphorism, he redrew the letters against softly silhouetted trees in a field of glowing red. Today, this striking image is available in the form of a sumptuous silk scarf—to be worn or simply contemplated.

In the current global political climate, where suspicion and demonization of science and medicine has been widespread, Ruscha’s prescient image has gained new resonance and topicality. In the processes of revelation in the often circuitous path toward truth, science and scientific thinking intersect with art—probing and searching intellectually and philosophically while seeking material consequences and outcomes. Like the most elegant of scientific theories, Ruscha’s images and idioms are at once irreducibly straightforward and heroically expansive. 

“We’re so grateful to Ed Ruscha for collaborating with us to help us deliver COVID relief to countries with the greatest needs,” said Jennifer Lotito, President and COO of (RED). “Gagosian’s support over the years has been invaluable in generating money for the AIDS fight and in raising heat and awareness for our efforts to end the deaths of millions of people from preventable and treatable disease.” 

“The suffering and loss of life as a result of COVID-19 are on a level we haven’t experienced in a long time and will hopefully never see again,” said Larry Gagosian, a member of (RED)’s Advisory Board since 2019. “Over the decade I’ve been involved with (RED), it has been remarkable to see the progress that has been made toward ending the AIDS crisis as a result of their efforts. My gallery continues to embrace our commitment to (RED): this time we are creatively engaging artists in ways that will stem the devastating impact of the coronavirus and support funding of desperately needed COVID relief to the world’s poorest countries.”

(RED) and Gagosian have worked alongside Sotheby’s with artists and designers since 2008 on a series of high-profile auctions to raise funds and awareness to help end AIDS. Their efforts have delivered $78 million to the fight.

Ed Ruscha

Throughout his storied career, Ed Ruscha has developed a lexicon of distinctively American images, words, and signs that imbue his paintings, drawings, prints, and books with a wry semiotic wit and cool visual style. Born in Nebraska in 1937, he moved from Oklahoma City to Los Angeles in 1956, where he attended the Chouinard Art Institute. From the outset, Ruscha called himself an “abstract artist . . . who deals with subject matter.” Abandoning academic connotations that came to be associated with Abstract Expressionism, he looked instead to advertising and popular media and brought words—as form, symbol, and material—to the forefront of painting. His word paintings, often drawn from his immediate surroundings, explore the noise, fluidity, and often mystifying nature of language. As the shape of the word becomes an image, the visual, verbal, semantic and semiotic intertwine. Through his formal experimentations and transformative use of the American vernacular, Ruscha continues to influence generations of artists worldwide.


Established by Larry Gagosian in Los Angeles in 1980, Gagosian is a global gallery specializing in modern and contemporary art with nineteen locations across the United States, Europe, and Asia. In addition to its galleries, Gagosian is at the forefront of the digital marketplace with innovative online viewing rooms, and initiatives including the Artist Spotlight online platform. The gallery has long developed cultural programming and events with artists, including performances, exhibition tours, public talks, film screenings, and studio visits, both in person and digitally through the Gagosian Premieres film series. Gagosian’s extensive in-house publishing program has produced nearly six hundred books, including catalogues raisonnés, artist monographs, scholarly exhibition catalogues, and limited editions, and a celebrated print and online magazine—Gagosian Quarterly—which recently celebrated its fifth anniversary. Complementing the gallery’s worldwide programming, the Gagosian Shop curates a coveted selection of rare books, art editions, unique collaborations, posters, jewelry, and apparel online, as well as at its physical retail spaces in New York on Madison Avenue and London in the historic Burlington Arcade.

Massif Central

Established in 2013, Massif Central produces limited-edition scarves by contemporary artists. Inspired by the trajectory of traditional French silk scarf-making, the New York based company takes its name from the region in France where the art form originated.