Wednesday, October 10, 2007

This is a famous drawing done by M.C. Escher in 1948, called Drawing Hands. In the foreground we see a right hand busy sketching a shirt-cuff upon a drawing pad. At this point its work is incomplete, but a little further to the right it has already drawn a left hand emerging from a sleeve in such detail that this hand has come right up out of the flat surface, and in its turn it is sketching the cuff from which the right hand is emerging. In the background we have a pad of paper pinned onto a drawing surface, this kind of background helps keep the focus on the hands.

Escher uses a lot of different elements in this drawing. The element of line is apparent when you look at the cuffs that are being drawn and also the drawing pad. Another element of art that Escher used in this drawing would be texture. The hands are perfectly shaded so that it looks very realistic. Not only did Escher use different elements of art, he also used some principles in his drawing. One of the main principle of art that he used would be movement. The circular shape of the hands drawing each other creates great movement throughout the whole drawing, and keeps your eyes moving around the whole picture.

Escher enjoyed giving his viewers a visual game in which he transformed flat pattern into three-dimensional objects. He takes one of the most common objects, like our hands, and creates an interesting concept with them. This drawing makes you ask a lot of questions.

I really love this drawing because it keeps you asking questions, such as, what hand started drawing first. Drawing Hands is one of Escher’s most recognized prints, although most people who are asked cannot name the artist. Drawing Hands is a conflict between the flat surface and spatial perception. No artist before or after Escher has been able to turn flat surfaces into such spatial realism. And through this, Escher’s Drawing Hands is a very successful drawing.

Escher, M.C. “Drawing Hands”. 1948. National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C. 10 Oct. 2007.


dominique ! said...

Very good :]

Do you think Escher had a specfic inspiration for this piece? Do you think any possible controversy came from this?

Jesse Nicole said...

I think that Escher was just drawing his hand and then tho whole idea of the second one came to him. This piece was definetely controversial during the time... Escher challenged the normal way of doing this to create a drawing that makes you think about how he did it.