Black ink and colored felt-tip pens on paper
48 x 61 cm, framed 60 x 70 cm
Donation by Jane Crawford, Gordon Matta-Clark Trust
As an architect and artist, Gordon Matta-Clark was familiar with drawing as a medium for sketching and planning his projects. Only after his death did the variety and extraordinary qualities as well as the large numbers of his drawings become known.
The artist Mary Heilmann remembers: “Even when he was making drawings, he would work in a state of frenzy. His face would get determined … and he’d do a little devil dance. He’d take colored pencils, dig in, press real hard and fast, and would scribble along. I loved those writing pieces. He would do that automatic writing in a way that was other-wordly, mysterious.” On the basis of his ecological concerns and under the influence of the Land Art movement, Gordon Matta-Clark was obsessively concerned with trees and their energy in his first pictures. This phase during his first New York period is closely associated with his alchemical projects using organic materials. Matta-Clark developed pictographs from the trees, dissolved them into abstract structures resembling urban situations and into calligraphies, arrows—drawings, which are concerned with energy and movement. (Sabine Breitwieser)