9 – 19 December 1998
1999 will be the Twentieth Anniversary year of the opening of Matt’s Gallery, which provides a fitting opportunity for the gallery to examine the wealth of documentation it has amassed over the 77 exhibitions of new work it has commissioned from 44 different artists over its history. Diverging from a more standard archive exhibition, BACKSPACE will simultaneously look back into the gallery’s past but also at its present and its future.
Simultaneously using all the gallery’s spaces, BACKSPACE provides a unique opportunity for visitors to investigate the gallery's history, philosophy and artists in depth. The exhibition will present archival documentation of exhibitions by David Troostwyk, Joel Fisher, Jaroslaw Kozlowski, Robin Klassnik & Tom Clark, Susan Hiller, Jeff Instone, Michael Porter, John Blake, Tony Bevan, Tomasz Osinski, Robert Janz, Amikam Toren, Gerald Newman, Avis Newman, Nat Goodden, Sue Arrowsmith, lan McKeever, Nan Hoover, Gerard Hemsworth, Anthony Wilson, Imants Tillers, Rose Finn-Kelcey, Richard Wilson, lan Breakwell, Hanna Luczak, Hannah Collins, Brian Catling, Kate Smith, Jimmie Durham, Edgar Heap of Birds, Melanie Counsell, Willie Doherty, Thomas Holley, Melanie Jackson, Matthew Tickle, Mike Nelson, John Frankland, Xenia K. Dieroff, Lucy Gunning, Sean Dower, Juan Cruz and Graham Fagen, together with information on the gallery’s influences such Galerie Akumulatory 2, Poznan.
Going beyond more standard documentary methods, the presentation of film and video of exhibitions and their making, slide projections, audio and text, photographs and models, will also be integrated with actual works by many of these artists. The exhibition spaces will have a formal structure but, as it is virtually impossible to condense twenty years of activity into any fixed summary, all elements will be open to change, from the films being shown, the slides for projection, and the objects and work on display. In addition to the integration of works from the past and present with the archival material, one gallery will house a weekly changing programme of new works by artists represented by or associated with the gallery, providing the most tangible way to sample the artists’ current practice. This multi-layered, continually changing structure will hopefully create a fluid, dynamic process of sampling the gallery’s history and relationships that is intended to stimulate the viewer to return again and again.
The impetus for BACKSPACE arose from the need to begin to collate the wealth of information the gallery has accumulated so that it can be formally presented in a fully accessible public archive in the gallery’s presently undeveloped back space. This process requires significant funding, both for the staff to organise the material and for the retrieval systems and the archive’s physical construction. As a signal of the gallery’s intention to establish this facility the archive process will be active during the exhibition, with new material being added to the displays as it is uncovered. This physical process, and the critical debates generated by the exhibition, will also form the backbone of the production of material for an intended publication investigating twenty years of Matt’s Gallery that the gallery hopes to publish at the end of 1999.
Further exhibitions at Matt’s Gallery
The Book of Spells, (a speculative fiction)
3 February – 24 April 2022
More things (To the memory of Honoré de Balzac)
13 February – 14 April 2013
AMNESIAC SHRINE or Double coop displacement
7 June – 30 July 2006
The Coral Reef
26 January – 26 March 2000
TRADING STATION ALPHA CMa
27 January – 3 March 1996