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2005/235/2 Road signs (2), manipulated, 'HOLD UP AHEAD' and 'Ned Kelly' style helmet, aluminium / reflective tape, designed by Richard Tipping, Wangi Wangi, New South Wales, Australia, 1982-1992. Click to enlarge.

Manipulated road signs

Made in Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia, 1983.

This collection of Richard Tippings street signs relate to the city landscape, advertising and the urban environment.
The artist Richard Tipping is known as a ‘visual poet’, he describes his work as ‘concrete poetry’, or poetry which appreciates words and even letters for the way they look, their aesthetic appeal as art objects. This is a unique commentary on Australian signage and public space. These manipulated road signs are a continuing theme in Tipping’s visual punning and urban commentary....


Object No.


Object Statement

Road signs (2), manipulated, 'HOLD UP AHEAD' and 'Ned Kelly' style helmet, aluminium / reflective tape, designed by Richard Tipping, Wangi Wangi, New South Wales, Australia, 1982-1992

Physical Description

Manipulated road sign from the 'Roadsigned series'. It is a rectangular sign with black writing on yellow background stating 'HOLD UP AHEAD'. It is combined with a square yellow sign with the graphic of a 'Ned Kelly' style helmet in black that adds new meaning to this road safety sign.
Both objects are signed on the reverse 'Richard Tipping, 1983, 'HOLD UP AHEAD' (pair). Example 2 of edition of 10'.


Both objects are signed by the author on the reverse. 'Richard Tipping, 1983 - 'HOLD UP AHEAD', (pair). Example 2 of edition of 10'.



300 mm


450 mm



Richard Tipping's work (prints or multiples or sculptures) is represented in the National Gallery and National Library, Canberra, state art galleries and university libraries in Australia. Internationally he is represented in the State University of New York at Buffalo, The Ruth and Marvin Sackner Archive of Visual Concrete Poetry, Miami, The Govett-Brewster Art Gallery, Plymouth, New Zealand.

Recent Exhibitions have included:
2003 'Signed signs' Public artworks Programme, Brisbane Powerhouse
2003 National Sculpture prize and exhibition
1998 'Perversions, subversion and verse' 'Ubu Gallery', New York
1997 'Hear the Art' The Eagle Gallery, London
1996 'Multiple pleasures' The Art Gallery of New South Wales
1996 'Hear the Art' Lake Macquarie City Art Gallery
1994 Rhumbarellas Gallery- Melbourne,
1994 'Fluxus and Beyond' Queensland Art Gallery
1993-1994 'Lightworks', Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney
1993 'Luminaries' Monash University Gallery, Melbourne
1993 '5th Australian Sculpture Triennial', Melbourne
1993 Chicago Art Fair
1992-1993 9th Biennale of Sydney: 'The Boundary Rider'
1992 'The Trial' National Gallery of Australia

Publications have included:
Road signs and visual art at
'The Sydney Morning', Vols 1-1V, Thorny Devil Press 1989-1994
'Nearer By Far' (poems) University of Queensland Press,1986
'Signs of Australia', (photographs), Penguin Books, 1982
'The Friendly Street Poetry Reader (editor), AUUP, 1977
'Domestic Hardcore'(poems), UQP, 1975

Manufactured by a Newcastle company 'Broadly Signs' using standard road sign measurements and materials. Australian roadsigns use an international standard design.

Written on verso 'Richard Tipping, 1983. Hold up a Head pair Example 2 of edition of 10'.



Editions of this sign have been exhibited in art galleries in Sydney, Melbourne, Chicago and London. It was shown in the 3rd Sculpture Biennale in Melbourne.


Credit Line

Gift of Mr Richard Tipping, 2005

Acquisition Date

15 November 2005

Cite this Object


Manipulated road signs 2018, Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, accessed 25 April 2019, <>


{{cite web |url= |title=Manipulated road signs |author=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences |access-date=25 April 2019 |publisher=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, Australia}}


This object record is currently incomplete. Other information may exist in a non-digital form. The Museum continues to update and add new research to collection records.

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