Hands

A friend gleefully described the video work above to me a while ago, and at the time I couldn’t imagine how footage of a clasped pair of hands could possibly look so wrong.  Made last year by Brisbane artist Liam O’Brien, the title Untitled (Hands) is innocuous enough.  And so, ostensibly, is the content.  However, O’Brien’s ECU of interlocking hands stretching and flexing is somehow incredibly explicit.  Perhaps it’s the spare soundtrack, consisting of the artist’s own steady breath, or the obsessive force with which he tugs at his digits (and then of course there’s the unidentified fluid…)  Not unlike the odd little finger games you play as a child, O’Brien’s hand wringing instead implicates the viewer as a decidedly adult voyeur.

Hands

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