Limerick, Ireland
Gladys Triana, I am here working, 2002, 57 pencil drawings on horomi paper over a photo mounted on linen in an embroidery hood, each 12 cm diameter

Gladys Triana

b. 1937, Cuba

In this autobiographical series, I use the image of my hands manipulating different objects. The contact between a hand and an object generates situations which, as fixed images, make us reflect on our capacity to transform reality and recreate the meaning of our most insignificant actions. The hand and the object create a sort of dialogue enriched with the spectrum of symbols that we retain in memory, and is transformed, in turn, according to the interpretation of each individual. The paragraph format, without punctuation, functions as a graphic support for the concept of form as content. The hand images become signs and emblems of quotidian rituals. Therefore, the shape of the artisan (the drawing) and the industrial process (the photograph) are both tools I have used to express values and personal quests relating to identity. The variety of objects enhances the actual change that takes place in social participation and interrelations. In the past, the theme of the hand has been approached on different planes. I replay the theme within a more intimate context, with a sense of presence and action.

I am here working is my way of reactivating the need for continuity and a deep respect for our existence, which, physically and spiritually, transcends all types of limitations. There is a vital and hopeful message in the activity of the hand, whether real or symbolic, and its environment.

(Text: on the border of each other catalogue, 2003)

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