Chicago

Vito Acconci

Young Hoffman Gallery

In An Idea for Storage in a Small Downtown Chicago Gallery, Vito Acconci used the space as a kind of depository for memories about and associations with childhood–not the storybook kind but that related to one’s primal screams. Unlike his earlier sound-structure installations, this one, possibly in response to the simple cubic space, had only three sculptural units and one continuous two-word dialogue. As a result, nondetailed cues suggested universal feelings.

For the dialogue/poetry/music, Acconci fed three loudspeakers with three separate stereo channels, each speaker unseen but “talking” under a metal swing in the gallery. Like the voices that attract your attention in many television commercials, Acconci’s voice here resounded at subtly different tonal levels, suggesting altering distance and space, or moods and times.

Below the longest swing, Acconci’s voice moaned, sighed, sang,

Sign-in to keep reading

Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. Please sign in below.

Not registered for artforum.com? Register here.

SUBSCRIBE NOW and save up to 65% off the newsstand price for full online access to this issue and our archive.

Order the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

* This rate applies to U.S. domestic subscriptions.