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Giant hands as a wake-up call to the problem of climate change

In old days, sculptors created their masterpieces for the sake of beauty and admiration, today – in order to pay attention. The more unusual, interesting, tempting and brighter the work is – the better. One of such original ideas has come to the head of the contemporary artist from Italy Lorenzo Quinn. A rather strange sculpture, stirring the fantasy, appeared recently in Venice.

Lorenzo Quinn

Lorenzo Quinn

The sculpture called “Support” was created specifically for the Venice Biennale of 2017 – one of the main forums of world art. It represents two giant hands emerging from the Grand Canal and supporting the building of the Ca’ Sagredo hotel. This monumental work is intended to remind about the dangers of climate change. According to the idea of the sculptor, “Support” is a visual reminder of the possible consequences of global warming and the sea level rise caused by it; this is an appeal to humanity, a call for action.

Recently, scientists forewarned that if the sea levels continue to rise, Venice, a city of art and a source of inspiration for different cultures during many centuries, could hide under water just within a century. According to official data, on average, Venice goes down under water by 0.8-1.0 millimeters per year. During the last century the city was flooded by 25 centimeters.

“The work generates an instinctive and immediate understanding of the environmental impact for places such as Venice… The hands symbolize the role people must play in supporting Venice’s unique world heritage.”


Venice Biennale

Venice Biennale

Venice Biennale

“Support” is also designed to reflect the two sides of human nature: creative and destructive. On the one hand, the hands symbolize the hope to keep the building above the water, and on the other, they show how much this hope is shaky.

“At once, the sculpture has both a noble air as well as an alarming one …

the hands symbolize tools that can both destroy the world, but also have the capacity to save it”.

Each hand weighs more than 2,200 kilograms. They were made in Quinn’s studio in Barcelona and brought to Venice specially for the 57-th art show, though the choice of city was deliberate for the author. Interesting fact – Quinn’s son, Anthony, was the model for the sculpture, to be more precise – his hands.

“This sculpture … wants to speak to the people in a clear, simple and direct way through the innocent hands of a child,” said Quinn on Instagram.

You may see the “Support” until November 26.

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