Sebastian Matta

Matta is one of the most visionary painters of the 20th century whose contribution to art history is fully established, yet within his oeuvre are still discoveries to be made.

At the beginning of his career, Matta started out as an architect and worked with Le Corbusier himself. Having met Picasso while he was working on Guernica (exhibited at the Spanish Pavilion of the Paris International World's Fair in 1937, where Le Corbusier designed the Pavilion of New Times), Matta's future lay with painting. Robert Melville wrote in his preface to Matta's 1951 ICA exhibition in London "Painting always has one foot in architecture, one foot in a dream."

After initially working as an architect, not only with Le Corbusier but also with Alvar Aalto and Walter Gropius during his youth in Europe, Matta brought a new concept of space to Surrealist painting, blending it with Abstract Expressionism and blowing the conceptual and constructive principles of modern architecture apart, opening it up to cosmic explosions and subjective implosions. He eventually integrated into his masterpieces socio-political commentaries, combined with his unique irony. Often crafting puns when titling his works, Matta utilized rich, sometimes almost bold colours to embed organic floating forms into his spatial architectures often in grand-scale canvases.
Matta has dedicated himself with interest and curiosity to the creation of design objects. His work is studded with furnishing accessories imagined for a 'Casa Matta' in which irony, poetry and beauty interact with living spaces. The surrealist object makes an incursion into everyday life and becomes part of it. Some of Matta's most surprising creations are those made in the mid-1960s, when he began his collaboration with Dino Gavina, creating Malitte (1966) and for the Ultramobile collection (1971) Margarita, Sacco Alato and MAgriTTA.

These pieces, which have become iconic in international design, continue to live on in the production of Gufram and Paradisoterrestre, which offer exact reproductions of the originals, updated in their materials, but intimately faithful to the pieces conceived and created by Matta.
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