Hand Show

Robert Filliou



Collection: Collection M HKA, Antwerp (Inv. no. M00003).

Robert Filliou made the photographic series Hand Show in collaboration with the photographer Scott Hyde. The series consists of 24 prints of photographs the duo shot of the hands of 24 artists, Filliou and Hyde included. Among the artists who lent a hand to be photographed were Roy Liechtenstein, Pol Bury and Andy Warhol; the latter, moreover, saw to it that the series would first be put on show in the display windows of Tiffany’s in New York. With Hand Show Filliou playfully examines what it is that might distinguish artists from non-artists. "It has occurred to me that the key to art may well consist in learning the significance or meaning of each part, line, marking or shape of the artists' hands. As a group, artists have many things in common that distinguish them from other groups", he says in an accompanying text. In the end, however, he has to conclude that all these hands display little in the way of similarities. Here, Filliou ridicules the notion that artists with their creative powers are somehow different than ‘regular’ folks. He calls into question the separation made between art and ordinary, everyday life.

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