Gordon Matta-Clark was a conceptual artist based in New York during the harsh economic downturn of 1970s America. Originally trained as an architect at Cornell University (1968), his subsequent artist career and practice drew from these structural practises and concepts to craft grand, architectural performances. Through the process of breaking, Matta-Clarks ‘building cuts’ engage with and re-define derelict urban spaces into representations of socioeconomic change. His iconic pieces ‘Splitting’ (1974) and ‘Days End’ (1975) cut into and visualise the values that defined the spaces’ lack of usability. In a style of forensic photography and film, the additions and subtractions to these spaces are highlighted and thoroughly documented.
In 1972, he co-founded the artist group ‘Anarchitecture’. The name a combination of anarchist and architecture, the group later held an exhibition of the same name to critique capitalist production and resistance to cultural change in modern buildings. Unfortunately passing later on in 1978, Matta-Clark’s innovative work went on to inspire many and his work exhibited internationally in ‘Passing Through Architecture: The 10 Years of Gordon Matta-Clark’, Power Station of Art, Shanghai (20120), ‘Gordon Matta-Clark: Anarchitect’, The Bronx Museum of the Arts, New York, Jeu de Paume, Paris and Kumu Art Museum, Tallinn, Estonia (2017-19), ‘Gordon Matta-Clark: Mutation in Space’, MOMAT, Tokyo (2018), ‘Jessamyn Fiore and Federica Matta on Gordon Matta-Clark’, The Bronx Museum of the Arts, New York (2018) and ‘Splitting, Cutting, Writing, Drawing, Eating… Gordon Matta-Clark’’, Serralves Museum, Porto, Portugal (2017).