Rebellious Modernities presents physical and emotional spaces that engage the senses. Four perspectives destabilise the modernist parameters that underpin architectural value.
Inspired by the concept of ‘anarchitecture’, a term coined by the late artist and architect Gordon Matta-Clark (1943–1978), the exhibition includes new works by Auckland-based artists Sosefina Andy, Matt Coldicutt and Yonel Watene. Against the backdrop of New Zealand’s ongoing housing crisis and the rise of homelessness worldwide, the artists propose a rebellious deconstruction of notions of private and public space, building life strategies for survival, resistance and the recovery of memory. Their at times precarious structures evidence modernism’s failures and hangover: excess leading to waste and unsuitable adaptations to other geographies. Most vitally, the works celebrate collectivism and political auto-construction.
The exhibition includes Matta-Clark’s 1972 film Open House, which records the artist’s industrial waste container built with discarded construction materials between 98 and 112 Greene Street, New York, where he co-founded the first artist-run gallery in SoHo in 1970. The footage contains dance performances by the artist, Tina Girouard, Keith Sonnier and other friends, activating the precarious architecture during the opening day.
→ Rebellious Modernities catalogue
→ Yonel Watene: Housewarming party, 2019 – Roomsheet
→ ‘Debuilding’ Modernist Architecture – EyeContact