An influential figure in the art world of 1930s New York, and a strong-voiced mentor to generations of artists, Mercedes Matter produced paintings and drawings exquisitely balanced between abstraction and representation. Her art education commenced when she was six, studying painting with her father, Arthur B. Carles. She went on to study with Maurice Sterne, Alexander Archipenko, and Hans Hofmann, painting still lifes, figures, and urban and interior scenes with a patchwork of marks inspired by Cézanne. Jackson Pollock and Alberto Giacometti were among the Modernist pantheon of her friends. Matter’s conviction that, as she famously wrote, “the knowledge an artist needs is absorbed only as it is proven in the laboratory of his experience,” led to her founding of the New York Studio School in 1964, which remains an essential laboratory for experience to this day.