Stories of the Hand

31/12/2003


The face makes us different; the hand, similar. The prints on the wet concrete of Hollywood Boulevard need to be identified with the name of the star, and the hand on the billboard by Félix González-Torres recalls an individual Jeff through a universal image. It makes us so similar that its gestures are confused. Do the red hands of Palestine and the white hands of Genoa express different desires? Because the red hands against the war in Barcelona and the white ones against terrorism in Madrid seem to go up in tune, while the red hands of the Israeli students and the bloodstained ones of the Palestinian that shows them after the lynching of soldiers in Ramala seem to be moved by a different rage. Voiceless hands are all and nothing: those of paper in the ephemeral graveyard of London cry the war identifying its victims, and the seemingly severed ones represent horror through accumulation. What presence do the positive and negative hands of Patagonia’s cave capture? What weight do the supportive hands of Venice bear? In the end, prayer and party become one, and the clinical movement of the glove is dissolved in the ultimate truth of the bone: the hand comes to be collective when stripped of its digital distinction...[+]