philadelphia

Vito Acconci

Slought Foundation

Exhibitions of performance artists’ work are often exercises in frustration. Forever deprived of the original event, one must settle for photographs, videos, and other forms of documentation that struggle to fill the void left behind by the missing work. Presenting architectural projects in a museum or gallery setting is equally problematic, plans and models becoming the focus. The unique challenge confronting curators Christine Poggi and Meredith Malone in “Power Fields: Explorations in the Work of Vito Acconci” at the Slought Foundation was how to represent Acconci’s performative and architectural practices in a context seemingly inhospitable to both. Their answer was to divide the exhibition into sections, chronologically and conceptually.

The first part of the show consisted of panels displaying archival documents concerning Acconci’s work of the late 1960s and early 70s. In its laconic

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