Photographs and chalk on board
Dimensions: Image: 29 7/8 x 39 7/8 inches (75.9 x 101.3 cm)
Acquired with funds provided by the National Endowment for the Arts and through the generosity of individual donors
Vito Acconci startled gallery viewers in the 1960s with his aggressive performance pieces that evolved around body-centered activities. He has carried this into his other work, his writings, installations, and sculptural work, as he explores the realities of self and situation. He often resorts to mundane, everyday props and always uses a real-life situation as his starting point. There is a consistency of purpose in his work, as he makes the connections between his own body and his destination. In Don't Walk Acconci combines photographs and chalked words in a sequential manner, arresting the movement of his performance. In this case Acconci is recording his response to an ordinary street sign, and the use of the chalk, the medium of sidewalk writing, emphasizes the normality of his action. It is the documentation of the action and the creation of a work of art out of it that is unusual, raising questions about what is art and what is not. (From “A Handbook of the Collection: Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art," 1998)
NOTE: This electronic record is compiled from historic documentation which may not reflect the Johnson Museum's complete or current knowledge of the object. Review and refinement of such records is ongoing.