From word to action to architecture
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Listen to a 83 minute recording, or download the file
Friday, February 29, 2008
Meyerson Hall B1, University of Pennsylvania (210 South 34th Street)
Slought Foundation, Philadelphia, in conjunction with the Departments of the History of Art and Architecture at the University of Pennsylvania, is pleased to announce a special lecture by Vito Acconci entitled 'FROM WORD TO ACTION TO ARCHITECTURE' on February 29, 2008 from 5-6:30pm in Meyerson Hall B1 in the School of Design at the University of Pennsylvania (210 South 34th Street).
Download Vito Acconci's Presentation (PDF, 6mb)
Download a Preview of Vito Acconci's Exhibition (PDF, .5mb)
Please note that seating is limited for this event. Tickets will be be made available on a first-come, first-serve basis one hour prior to the start time in the lobby of Meyerson Hall.
Acconci will address the role of process, drafts, and the question of the archive in his studio practice. This event has been organized in conjunction with the opening of Power Fields: Explorations in the Work of Vito Acconci, an exhibition featuring the work of artist Vito Acconci and the Acconci Studio. The exhibition will be on display in the galleries at Slought Foundation from February 15-March 31, 2008; please note that an opening reception for the associated exhibition in the Slought Foundation galleries will take place at 6:30-8:30pm, immediately after Vito Acconci's lecture.
For more information on programs organized in conjunction with the exhibition, including "Public Nuisance," a full-day symposium on Saturday, March 1 2008, please visit http://slought.org/search/acconci/
Image: Vito Acconci, "The Peoplemobile (Project for town squares in Holland)," 1979, detail.
"It is the best of architecture, it is the worst of architecture. Itís the age of lightness, of fluid architecture; itís the age of architecture thatís constructed into forms of fluidity and lightness that themselves remain solid and heavy. Itís the epoch of architecture that emerges and grows as a living creature; itís the epoch of architecture that looks as if it emerges and grows, that looks like a living creature. Itís the era of sensual architecture; itís the era of a visual architecture of effects. Itís the season of virtual architecture, science-fiction architecture, video-game architecture; itís the season of architecture that, when built, comes tumbling back down to earth. Itís the spring of computational architecture; itís the winter of a generic architecture generated by and justified by numbers. We architects and designers practice operations now that will make architects ultimately unnecessary, we anticipate architecture that designs itself; in the meantime, weíre specialized into a chosen few starchitects. We architects and designers harness multiple complexities; all the while we refine complication into elegance, we revive aesthetics, we do something that smells like art, we fall back on taste, we hang onto an Ďupper class.í We architects and designers build for people; but, as we write personally derived scripts, and mix and match a multitude of formal parameters, our design-process gets lost in translation Ė the building masquerades as a force of nature, and weíre asking people to only believe."
- Vito Acconci/Acconci Studio, A Tale of Two or More Architectures (An Architecture of Fairy-Tales), (Icon Magazine, Feb 2007)
Vito Acconci was born in Bronx, NY in 1940, and currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. His early work took the form of fiction and poetry, and his last poems reduced words to indices of the writer's and reader's travel across the page. In the late 1960s and the early 1970s, his first artworks used performance, photos, film and video as instruments of self-analysis and person-to-person relationships. His audio and video installations of the mid-1970s turned an exhibition-space into a community meeting-place. His architectural games of the early 80s made performative spaces for viewers, whose activity resulted in the construction and deconstruction of house prototypes. In the mid 1980s the work crossed over into architecture, landscape, and industrial design. In 1988 he started Acconci Studio, a theoretical-design and building workshop. Their method is, on the one hand, to make a new space by turning an old one inside-out and upside-down; and, on the other hand, to insert within a site a capsule that grows out of itself and morphs itself. Their tendency is toward leftover sites and outlands, where hypotheses might be buildable and testable as future cities. They treat architecture as an occasion for activity; they make spaces fluid, changeable, and portable. For more information on the Acconci Studio, visit http://www.acconci.com/
This program was made possible in part through the generous sponsorship of the Department of Architecture at PennDesign, the Visual Studies Program, and the Department of the History of Art at the University of Pennsylvania, which gratefully acknowledges the generous support of Leslee Halpern-Rogath and David Rogath in funding the Fall 2007 Halpern-Rogath Curatorial Seminar exploring the work of Vito Acconci.
Christine Poggi, Meredith Malone
Media files on the Slought.org website are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.5 License.
Vito Acconci. "From word to action to architecture." Slought Foundation Online Content. [29 February 2008;
Accessed 12 December 2013]. <http://slought.org/content/11387/>.