Imani Jacqueline Brown, Old Gods (detail), 2021, Courtesy of the artist

Unsettling Matter, Gaining Ground

Heinz Architectural Center

Drawing from the museum’s collection alongside a selection of new commissions and loans, Unsettling Matter, Gaining Ground reflects on modernity’s reliance on fossil fuels and explores the various means by which contemporary architectural, artistic, and design practices challenge the hegemonic social, spatial, political, and economic systems that uphold mechanisms of extraction. The exhibition turns to its immediate territorial context—from the Appalachian Plateau to the subterranean beds of the Marcellus Shale—to trace the role of global logics of extraction in organizing and disrupting cities, spaces, and human and non-human communities and ecologies. Unsettling Matter, Gaining Ground, will present the iconic The Continuous Miner (1954) painting series from the museum collection in its entirety for the first time since the Heinz Galleries’ inaugural exhibition in 1975. The works presented by participating architects, artists, and collectives put forth attitudes of creative resistance and chart ways of cohabiting the planet in the face of an intensifying ecological emergency. As part of this exhibition, Carnegie Museum of Art will present public programs that bring into dialogue architects, activists, scientists, and practitioners across disciplines.

Unsettling Matter, Gaining Ground is organized by Theodossis Issaias, associate curator, Heinz Architectural Center, and Ala Tannir, curatorial research fellow, Heinz Architectural Center.

Exhibition Images


The programs of the Heinz Architectural Center are made possible by the generosity of the Drue Heinz Trust.

Carnegie Museum of Art is supported by The Heinz Endowments and Allegheny Regional Asset District. Carnegie Museum of Art receives state arts funding support through a grant from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, a state agency funded by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

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