Great to be involved in the Virus who came to Tea Instagram digital exhibition @r_is_n.projects because it gives me the chance to show a more carefree approach to my work. Here are a few of my ceramic hands usually installed in town and country environments, but this time arranged with a plastic monster toy, old fashioned flower presses and my favourite 1930’s teapot. Take a look at more of these on my own Instagram @helenbirnbaumceramics. Enjoy.
The 100 Hands were made in remembrance of the Covid pandemic in 2020 and installed outside a local church to symbolise the effect of the pandemic on communities. I chose to make hands because they have been used by artists for centuries as evocative symbols of humanity and I made my hands in different clay colours to emphasise the shared universal loss. The image below shows church workers coming to open up their church on the day before it was opened for a prayer. They felt that the hands were an apt and reverent symbol and were pleased to be photographed with the work. The church workers symbolise healing and a new life.
The 100 Hands represent community; in my photographs this is a silent community unable to be in its usual places and in the film the hands outside the church represent a community waiting to open the doors. We all recognise just how important our hands are to us and in this time of quarantine there is a sadness in out relationship with the hands that we cannot use to touch things surfaces and those we love for fear of infection.