"Here is what we have to offer you... confusion guided by a clear sense of purpose." – Gordon Matta-Clark
Starting from diverse premises and points of view, Cedric Price, Aldo Rossi, James Stirling, and Gordon Matta-Clark each engaged in a radical rethinking of the status, history, and purpose of architecture. out of the box: price rossi stirling + matta-clark brings the ideas of these four pivotal figures of the 1970s into dialogue through a group of archives that recently entered the CCA collection. Drawings, sketches, models and texts offer new understandings of the process and development of architectural ideas.
“out of the box continues a long line of inquiry into CCA archives of late 20th-century architecture, which has already resulted in important exhibitions on Peter Eisenman and John Hejduk…” says Nicholas Olsberg, CCA Director (2001-04). “The positions assumed by Price, Rossi, Stirling and Gordon Matta-Clark in the 1970s urgently call for reassessment, as we move into a world similarly characterized by a growing sense of uncertainty.” Many of the questions raised by their work are still current and unanswered: How can we envisage a building that is not one? Can architecture transcend memory and experience, or need it be a kind of autobiography? How can architecture “listen” to the world that surrounds it – its multiple histories and its varied contexts? Can we replace “architecture” with “anarchitecture,” and what would “anarchitecture” be?
The exhibition is only one step toward a wider ranging inquiry as curators and others involved in this research, students and visitors included, engage in a continuing task of adjustment, correction, and changes of course. The installation is designed to reflect this “instability,” so that it will be ready to accept new materials, rearrangements, and changes of heart.
out of the box: price rossi stirling + matta-clark is curated by Mirko Zardini, Senior Consulting Curator of the CCA (2003-05) and developed with the participation of a team of scholars, critics, curators, and architects, including Hubertus von Amelunxen, Marco De Michelis, Philip Ursprung, Anthony Vidler, Mark Wigley, and – from CCA, Louise Désy, Pierre-Édouard Latouche, Gwendolyn Owens, Howard Shubert, and Alexis Sornin. The exhibition is designed by Montréal architect Louis-Charles Lasnier.
The exhibition is accompanied by a website, out of the box, conceived as a trace of the installation at the CCA. The dual purpose of the site is to document the exhibition and at the same time provide an open-ended framework to support ongoing investigation and discussion.