Although self-taught as an artist, Weiner emerged as a leading figure in Conceptual Art gaining international acclaim in the late 1960s. Born in the Bronx, New York, Weiner is best known for his use of language as the primary source for his work. This emerged in 1968, following his earlier experimentations with painting and shaped canvases. His language-based works predominantly take the form of wall installations in galleries, although they have also been spoken as dialogue in video, printed in book format or incorporated into public spaces. In these statements which often centre on materials, actions or processes, Weiner focuses on the interaction between the work and the viewer.
Late 20th century art that includes a great variety of styles, so is hard to define but is often characterised as a reaction against the formalism perceived to dominate Modernism. In architecture, it describes a style which borrows from many different traditions and which contrasts with the clarity and simplicity of many modernist buildings.