Art Only the Universe Can Make: Christine Corday’s ‘Relative Points’ Opens at CAM
There’s a feeling you get when you catch a glimpse of the power and immensity of our universe: the vast, airless white outside an airplane window, the pure pressure of a waterfall pouring down upon a floor of stones.
That’s the sensation that New York-based sculptor Christine Corday wants you to have when you encounter her work. A veteran of NASA’s Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence program (yes, that is a real thing), Corday came to her studio practice out of a fascination with the primordial forces that shape the universe itself, as well as the human observer’s evolving ability to fathom those forces. And beginning on Jan. 18, St. Louisans will have the opportunity to experience the total power of her cosmos, all within the walls of the Contemporary Art Museum.
“RELATIVE POINTS”—Corday’s first solo show ever to be exhibited inside a museum, for reasons you’ll see after the emdash—is anchored by 12 monumental works, each made out of literally thousands of pounds of metalloid grit compressed into astonishing forms that will challenge you to think differently about the very pressure that holds the stuff of our world together. The show, curated by Lisa Melandri, Wassan Al-Khudhairi and Misa Jeffereis, is rounded out by a new series of hybrid paintings, “Primer Grey, Centers for Gravity,” which Corday uses to get you to question your own notions of color, pressure and space itself.
These might seem like big claims, but if you caught Corday’s stupendous “SpacewalkerTM / +43F 14.7p“ exhibit at projects+gallery last year—the one with the space suits she invited you to wear around the gallery—you already know that her work lives up to her word.
“As far as Earth is concerned, our senses have been evolving for the last million years; that’s quite a pace!” Corday says. “And I love being able to slow down and grasp the scale of that pace. But our perceptory tools aren’t finished evolving, right? We’re evolving right now this very moment, even through our very fingertips. So all of these pieces point toward being able to focus the evolution of your perceptory system through this very moment into the next.”
All images courtesy of the Contemporary Art Museum.