Brooklyn-based Matter Practice is co-directed by Sandra Wheeler and Alfred Zollinger. MATTER’s work encompasses architecture, exhibition design, custom fabrication, and proposals for building in the public environment. The office practices along two fundamental lines of focus as demonstrated by research initiatives and completed projects: material innovation, and the engagement of architecture as participant in communicating relevant social themes to large and varying bodies of public.
MATTER has designed and/or built numerous installations, exhibitions, and intimately scaled architectures for such public clients as the National Building Museum, Kellen Gallery at Parsons the New School for Design, Museum of Art at Rhode Island School of Design, the International Center of Photography, the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, the Anchorage Museum of History and Art, and the Center for Architecture in New York, and the Museum of Chinese in America (a LEED project in collaboration with artist Maya Lin).
MATTER has received top honors for exhibition design from the Society of Environmental Graphic Designers (2010, 2009, 2005, and 2004), was a finalist of the PS1/MoMa Young Architects Program (2011, 2008), and was awarded an Independent Project Grant from the New York State Council of the Arts (2010). They are winners of the competitions Gimme Shelter: Urban Shade Structures for the City of Phoenix (2010), Sukkah City (2010), and AIA New Practices New York (2008), a biennial juried selection recognizing up and coming, innovative firms in the city. 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.
Prior to co-founding Matter, Sandra Wheeler gained experience designing projects ranging from indie theater sets to corporate campus buildings with noted architecture and interdisciplinary design offices in Canada, where she grew up, and the United States. Originally trained as a precision machinist in his native Switzerland before becoming an Architect, Alfred Zollinger has extensive practical experience in manufacturing and construction in both Europe and the United States. He is currently Director of the Design Workshop, the design/build studio for Masters of Architecture program, Parsons the New School for Design. In addition to professional undergraduate degrees (B.Arch) in Architecture, both completed post-professional graduate studies (M.Arch) at Cranbrook Academy of Art.