Hands up who can’t get enough of this sculpture by New-York based artist Clark Goolsby? At Rest is composed of several hands cast in resin, hung up together using colourful string. Clasped together in this way, they are ambiguously evocative of praying hands, or hands offering something, or even hands severed from the human body altogether, like a momento mori symbol. They have a human-like quality and the sensation of touch is palpable, but their pale white colour suggests the contrasting state of death.
Goolsby’s work emphasises the physicality of the body. This 18 foot skeletal figure – entitled Dead Man (below) – is likewise suspended from the ceiling by string, hovering above the ground in a zombie-like state. Its monstrous size and cadaverous appearance suggest Goolsby’s interest in the exaggerated physicality of the human form.
These works were recently exhibited at Los Angeles’ POVevolving Gallery. ‘Overall the whole show is about death and the fragility of life,’ explained Goolsby. ‘I am specifically interested in how we maintain optimism in a world that is so full of potentially life ending situations. I have been using the Dead Hand and many other symbols as metaphors for reflecting on these ideas.’
This video shows Goolsby assembling Dead Man at POVevolving: