Bringing a poet’s perspective to an artist’s archive, this highly original book examines wordplay in the art and thought of American artist Gordon Matta-Clark (1943–1978). A pivotal figure in the postminimalist generation who was also the son of a prominent Surrealist, Matta-Clark was a leader in the downtown artists' community in New York in the 1970s, and is widely seen as a pioneer of what has come to be known as social practice art. He is celebrated for his “anarchitectural” environments and performances, and the films, photographs, drawings, and sculptural fragments with which his site-specific work was documented.
In studies of his career, the artist’s provocative and vivid language is referenced constantly. Yet the verbal aspect of his practice has not previously been examined in its own right. Blending close readings of Matta-Clark’s visual and verbal creations with reception history and critical biography, this extensively researched study engages with the linguistic and semiotic forms in Matta-Clark’s art, forms that activate what he called the “poetics of psycho-locus” and “total (semiotic) system.” Examining notes, statements, titles, letters, and interviews in light of what they reveal about his work at large, Frances Richard unearths archival, biographical, and historical information, linking Matta-Clark to Conceptualist peers and Surrealist and Dada forebears. Gordon Matta-Clark: Physical Poetics explores the paradoxical durability of Matta-Clark’s language, and its role in an aggressively physical oeuvre whose major works have been destroyed.
|Publisher:||University of California Press|
|Edition description:||First Edition|
|Product dimensions:||6.20(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.80(d)|
About the Author
Frances Richard is the author of three books of poetry, coauthor of Odd Lots: Revisiting Gordon Matta-Clark’s “Fake Estates,” and editor of Joan Jonas is on our mind and I Stand in My Place with My Own Day Here: Site-Specific Art at The New School. She teaches at the California College of the Arts.
Table of Contents
Introduction. CONFUSION GUIDED BY A CLEAR SENSE OF PURPOSE; or, a comet, which would have its tail in front PART ONE. TOTAL (SEMIOTIC) SYSTEM: READING GORDON MATTA-CLARK “Total (Semiotic) System” Walking and Reading WORKING AT SEVERAL DIMENTIONS “A step taken in the fog” “Kool Killer, or the Insurrection of Signs” PART TWO. ANARCHITECTURE AS POETIC DEVICE: GORDON MATTA-CLARK AND THE SOHO CONVERSATION Anarchitecture as Poetic Device “The Poetics of Psycho-Locus” AVAILABLE “Metaphoric Void”Arche and the Alpha Privative "Ambiguity Is All” Art World Prince BEST LATED WISHES Of Trees, Burial, Cooking, and Cannibalism “Another name more or less the same” Venn Diagram To THE MEETING and THE MOB (AGAIN) MAKING NOT SOLVING PROBLEMS The Irrational Village and the Non-u-ment Un-monumentalizing Conversation Monument, Non-u-ment, and Site/Non-site Smithson Coda: The IslandsQuadrille, Walls paper, et al.Fake Estates LAYERED REALITY, Thin Edge, and Space Between “Been Gone”: Notes on the Index Cut/Draw/WriteImmune versus Cancer Cells PART THREE. A SILENT FORCE: THE LEGACIES OF MATTA AND DUCHAMP DEMENTIONS “A Silent Force” Matta and Pajarito: “Psychological Morphology” and Réalité parallèle Noguchi “Jestures”Étant . . . Anartist and Anarchitecture
Inframince and Thin Edge Bullet Holes Phenomena of
Infra- Readymade and Ready-to-be-unmade The Alchemical Pun PART FOUR. SPACISM: GORDON MATTA-CLARK AND THE POLITICAL “We chose to build a world of our own” “My understanding of art . . .” and THE JOY OF GETTING AWAY WITH IT SPACISM “I woundered who it is for . . .” Chile and the Bienal de São PauloWindow Blow-OutArc de Triomphe for WorkersA Resource Center and Environmental Youth Program for Loisaida THE VOYEURIST'S SPACE Violent Space, SECURITY MEASURES, and THE SIGN POST ANARCHIE The Money Photographs Cornell ’69 “Gordon Matta-Clark and
Individualism” “A fine-tuned language and logic of the body” Conclusion. “WITHIN ABSURDITY THERE IS A FANTASTIC FREEDOM” Acknowledgments Abbreviations Notes List of Illustrations