is a professionally licensed design firm focused on projects which foster civic engagement within the public environment: civic structures, exhibitions, and design/build installations could describe the range. Our clients primarily are museums, educational institutions, cultural centers, and non-profit organizations — with occasional residential or commercial work in the mix.
We privilege rewarding collaborations with our clients and co-designers, who continue to inspire us to new ideas. With them, we strive to produce holistic spatial solutions that are materially rich, aesthetically unique, socially relevant, and practical.
We deliberately chose a name that would remind us of both our origins and aspirations as architects. ‘Matter’— from Latin materia, 'material'—in its current usage suggesting something beyond just physical stuff. ‘Practice’— from Greek praktikos, ‘concerned with action’—an arguably less self-conscious association with necessary professional service. Practicing also means applying ourselves.
The firm has received top honors for exhibition design from the Society of Environmental Graphic Designers, was a finalist of the PS1/MoMa Young Architects Program, and was awarded an Independent Research Project Grant from the New York State Council of the Arts. They are winners of the competitions Gimme Shelter: Urban Shade Structures for the City of Phoenix, Sukkah City, Times Square Alliance Public Art Program, and AIA New Practices New York. MATTER’s work has been featured in FRAME, Interior Design, Architectural Record, the New York Times, and the publications Transmaterial 3 and New Exhibition Design 02.
The work of this practice is reflective of the dedication and talent of many people. Current and past MATTER members include:
Sandra Wheeler and Alfred Zollinger (co-founders); Elizabeth Beecherl, Chelsea Crisafulli, Ken Kinoshita, Parker B Lee, Christopher Malloy, Karina Moya, Sean Barbe
John Brandes, Christine Chang, Danae Colomer, Geraldo Danneman, Hannes Decanq, Duff DuFresne, Shawn Faulkner, Paul Freudenburg, Del Hardin Hoyle, Lindsey Jones, Ryan Kahen, Ina Ko, Emily Mak, Bahare Nadjafi, Devin Rutz, Julia Scholzen, Julia Torres, Takuya Toyama, Samuel Weston, Eri Yamagata
And many others who have joined us on specific competition and fabrication teams — thank you.