It seems to be a slow month in the galleries but the biggest surprise was the Gordon Matta-Clark/Rirkrit Tiravanija show at David Zwirner. I’ve been in my cave for the last month and a half so I didn’t even know this was happening until I walked by the space on 19th Street (more photos here).
A revisiting of earlier installations (from 1972 & 1992) in the area of 89 & 112 Greene Street in Soho by the two artists, the Chelsea installation is a fusion of a dumpster, a soup kitchen, a stage set and a shell of a generic volume that looks fixed in the perpetually state of being built. Matta-Clark’s dumpster cum maze, was covered with tags and inside I spotted a few kids with sharpies in hand adding their scribbles to the narrow halls. With only one way out, the passages were claustrophobic. It felt like walking into a squatted building.
Adjacent to Matta-Clark’s mobius mobile home, Tiravanija’s soup kitchen looked like the dining area of a movie set. Casually dressed creative-types lounging on collapsible chairs and portable gas tanks heating up big pots of some Thai-concoction (I didn’t partake since I wasn’t sure what was in it). The food was free but the mood was dull, yet there was something alluring about the makeshift habitat.
A stone’s throw from both Gehry’s new squat dot-com skyscraper and Manhattan’s own Googleplex, Zwirner is a perfect stage to act out a commentary on globalization’s new affluent and hyper-intellectual nomads–us.