phantom LIM

July 21 – September 1, 2018

Opening Reception
July 21, 6 – 9 pm


Phantom LIM, on view July 21 through September 1, 2018, investigates the formal relationships developed in the imperceptible negotiations between art and object. 

A phantom limb is the physical sensation that a missing limb is still attached. It is the discrepancy between what is perceived and what is there. This phenomenon reveals the way people exist toward the world, oriented around perceiving the world, on one hand, and a tension in time and space between the person-in-the-present and the habit of being, on the other. This tension continually navigates a limbo zone, where new perspectives and aesthetic forms can coalesce in the gap between being and becoming. 

It is this perspective that the Torrance Art Museum inhabits with Phantom LIM - objects forming in these indeterminate regions, oriented to the world, by bodies that perceive, build and judge. Phantom LIM showcases artworks that re-make themselves into the world by requiring the viewer to actively negotiate their form and content. The artists in Phantom LIM investigate these limits of perception and the formal relationships that develop in the aesthetic exchanges between object and art. Relying less on the predestination of planning, and more on intuition, they determine their artwork through both conscious and unconscious aesthetic and practical judgements.

The works in the exhibition negotiate nebulous boundaries and zones of indeterminate determination - liminal spaces where “objects-in-process” intersect with “art object.” These are spaces between here and there where a moment of transition occurs, a directional impulse that remains a Schrödinger’s cat or a memory of something yet to happen.

  • Liminal: Relating to a transitional or initial stage of a process. Occupying a position at or on both sides of a boundary
  • LIM: referring to a mathematical limit. In mathematics, a limit is the value that a function or sequence “approaches” as the input approaches some value.
  • Limbo: an uncertain period of waiting, awaiting a decision, resolution or judgement; an indeterminate state or condition

The exhibition encompasses sculpture, installation, photography and painting from artists throughout Southern California and the United States.


Coleen Sterritt
Jessica Stockholder
Joan Tanner
Valerie Wilcox

Steve DeGroodt
Daniel T. Gaitor-Lomack
David Gilbert
Julia Haft-Candell
Gedi Sibony

Curated by Benjamin W. Tippin and Max Presneill