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Print - Don't Talk Down to Me

Don't Talk Down to Me

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    Hamburg (city) (published)

  • Date:

    1977-1982 (printed)
    1982 (published)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Holzer, Jenny, born 1950 (artist)
    Ruthenberg, Peter (printer)
    Holzer, Jenny, born 1950 (printer)
    G.W.E. Partner (publisher)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Offset lithograph on paper

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level D, case E, shelf 8, box C

Jenny Holzer grew up in the American Midwest, and her work has been influenced by the snappy statements she heard around her daily. She also recalls that as a child she made drawings on great lengths of paper in which she tried to include everything because 'I guess I had a hard time making choices . . . so I'd figure perhaps I could get it perfect if I put everything in. The total thing would be complete even if the individual parts weren't.' Her work first appeared in public in 1977 when she bill-posted texts consisting of lists of frequently disturbing but often witty aphorisms (short, pithy statements) around Times Square in New York. Since then, similar texts have appeared in various forms, such as electronically, between public information announcements in airport lounges and banks, as well as in poster form. The portfolio from which this piece comes is a printed edition of some of her earlier bill-posted work.

Physical description

Square sheet of pink paper, printing in black. Twenty lines of text printed in capital letters, set centrally to page but not justified. commencing: Don't Talk Down To Me... and finishing ....Do You Want To Fall Not/ Ever Knowing Who Took You?

Place of Origin

Hamburg (city) (published)


1977-1982 (printed)
1982 (published)


Holzer, Jenny, born 1950 (artist)
Ruthenberg, Peter (printer)
Holzer, Jenny, born 1950 (printer)
G.W.E. Partner (publisher)

Materials and Techniques

Offset lithograph on paper


Height: 41.9 cm sheet, Width: 41.9 cm sheet

Descriptive line

Print by Jenny Holzer from the 'Truisms and Essays' portfolio of 12 offset lithographs. USA, 1977-1982.

Production Note

The set was unsigned and unnumbered and published in an edition of 1,000. One of four plates from the suite 'Inflammatory Essays', published together with the suite of six entitled 'Truisms' as 'Truisms and Essays'.


Printing ink; Paper


Offset lithography

Subjects depicted




Production Type

Limited edition


Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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