This is Not a Hot Dog

This installation by The Arizona Cancer Evolution Center explores the iconic hot dog through the lens of cancer, food insecurity, and human behavior. The title pays homage to the famous painting by Rene Magritte, “The Treachery of Images”—more commonly known as “This is Not a Pipe.” In this work, Magritte encouraged viewers to explore the difference between an object and the image of an object, playing with constructs of language and visual representation. We will follow Magritte’s lead, playing with the image of a hot dog and the many associations, words, and relationships that people have with this American icon. The installation explores the multitude of meanings a simple food can have to a wide variety of eaters. Food is not just food; it represents myriad ideas that can be unpacked and investigated. Class, memory, health, disease, ritual, and family can all be explored through the hot dog. Is the hot dog an emblem of Fourth of July picnics? Cancer? Food insecurity? Baseball? This installation invites you to add your own thoughts and ideas. We want to know: what does a hot dog mean to you?