Christine Corday: Protoist Series, Selected Forms

BP Grand Entrance
December 13, 2014–April 5, 2015

Christine Corday:  Protoist Series, Selected Forms is the artist’s first solo presentation at an American museum and the culmination of her work replacing the paintbrush with the heat of a plasma torch. Corday coined the term "protoist" to describe forms in and out of a solid state, and a series of works in which she aims to suspend the moment between sensory perception and  definition.

Corday draws on her diverse studies in astronomy, cultural anthropology, chemistry, and the science of sensory perception, and her sculptures possess an archeo-astrological quality, as if they were left behind and unearthed.  The two artworks on view in the exhibition, UNE and KNOUN, exist as recording devices; every handprint that touches them will appear over time as rust, mapping an intimately individual yet shared public surface.

As a painter, Corday created her own tar-like paint mulled from raw pigment and synthetic polymers, applying it with large hand-made tools and brushes. Her early works featured abstract forms and a stark palette. Later, after living and working in Japan and Spain, Corday's work evolved, as her large forms began to reveal further dimension.  With experience gained from an astrophysics internship at NASA Ames Research Center, she intensified her mark-making through heat, utilizing a 35,000˚ F plasma torch. Corday’s approach, manipulating matter in and out of different states, produces resulting forms that catch and collect the presence of the viewer's hands and perception, bringing collected memories to the surface. 

This exhibition is included in General Admission.
Join now and see it free, or reserve a ticket.


This exhibition was organized by the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and supported by a generous grant from Lannan Foundation. In-kind support was provided by KC Fabrications, New York.

Memory Recorded: Christine Corday's Protoist Series

Two new entities have recently joined Chris Burden’s Urban Light in LACMA’s BP Grand Entrance. They are large, dark rust-colored Forms—“with a capital F,” as the artist refers to them—and are part of Christine Corday’s protoist series.

Corday coined the term “protoist” in order to describe her focus of large-scale objects. The word incorporates the Greek root proto, meaning “first,” a term that Corday employs to embody notions of the primordial...