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Vito Acconci

Vito Acconci
Vito Acconci image via The Brooklyn Rail

b. 1940
Lives and works in:

Brooklyn, New York

Represented by:

Acconci Studio, Brooklyn, NY

Education includes:

College of the Holy Cross BA, Worcester, MA

University of Iowa MFA, Iowa City

Acconci, a New York born and based artist, began his career in the mid-60s as a poet and co-editor (with poet and author Bernadette Mayer) of the journal 0 to 9. The journal published works by important contemporaneous artists and writers such as Robert Barry, Dan Graham, Sol Lewitt, Yvonne Rainer, and Robert Smithson.By the late 60s Acconci drifted from writing and, influenced by the readings he participated in, started exploring performance-based work, video, film, and photography. Much of this work was highly conceptual and focused on the artist’s body within space (Following, an early piece, consisted of the artist being led around New York City by strangers). Another prominent feature of this work was the element of total physicality as pronounced through his engagement with his own body, which at times was quite grotesque and bordered on violent. Perhaps his most notorious piece, Seedbed (1971), consisted of Acconci lying under a wooden ramp in Sonnabend Gallery, masturbating, while his concurrent fantasies were being broadcast through speakers in the gallery. This piece, which employed performance, language, and a direct relationship between the viewer and the artist, would establish the vein in which Acconci worked for years to come.
crash by vito acconci

Crash by Vito Acconci, image via Wikipedia

By the 1980s, Acconci explored more proto-architectural constructions, moving out of the traditional gallery space into more open, dialogical, public space. In 1988 he formed Acconci Studio, an architecture and landscaping firm, with a group of other architects. Acconci Studio, based in Brooklyn, continues to design public buildings.

City of Words, Lithograph by Vito Acconci

City of Words, Lithograph by Vito Acconci, image via Wikipedia

Vito Acconci- Homepage

Wikipedia Entry

Books About Vito Acconci:
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