Catalogue for a group exhibition organized by artist and curator Justin Beal at Wallspace in New York City.
Soft Matter includes artworks by Archizoom Associati, Becky Beasley, Hans Breder, Tom Burr, Talia Chetrit, Gaylen Gerber, Luisa Lambri, Enzo Mari, Carlo Mollino and Michael E. Smith. Text by Justin Beal, as well as the first English translation of Enzo Mari's Progetto e passione (Design and Passion) which outlines Mari's personal framework for understanding the duties and obligations of professional designers.
The show borrowed its title from a classification of material including organic matter, plastics, and foams used as a curatorial subcategory in Ezio Manzini’s 1989 survey of postmodern design, The Material of Invention. Manzini took the term from French physicist Pierre-Gilles de Gelles, who used it to describe matter, both biological and synthetic, which self-organizes into physical structures whose behavior cannot be predicted by their microscopic constituents or their macroscopic whole.
The catalogue traces Beal’s interests in his own sculptural practice, grouping work which expands the notion of soft matter to include the unconventional manipulation of rigid architectural forms; the indexical relationship between body and furniture; and the physical presence of objects that have the plasticity to shift between disciplines.
Designed by Mark Owens with Nilas Andersen
Published by Wallspace
First edition, 2015
Printed in edition of 500 copies
80 pages, 6.5 x 8.75 inches