Hand Movies

March 7, 2012:

Vienna – in the frame of the Surgical Wrappings-research project a trilogy of HAND MOVIES is being produced. Inspired by the performance artist and choreographer Yvonne Rainer, three five minute videos are developed in the operating theater of plastic surgery. “The hand of the surgeon is not simply a precision tool for getting things right. It is also an empathetic and creative extension of the feelings–the hand of the surgeon feels for the body of the patient. There is a tremendous tenderness in this relationship. Hand Movie 1 opens with an extreme close-up on a pair of hands folded contemplatively as if in prayer, except they are covered in sterile gloves tucked into the arms of a surgical gown. The two thumbs support one another, bouncing together in rhythm as if performing in dialog the inner thoughts of the surgeon as he plots his first steps. It is as if the surgeon is limbering up for the performance ahead, stretching the fingers as a pianist might do before an important performance for which there has been no time to warm up. But there is never the opportunity for a surgeon to rehearse on a living body. All cuts are a true live performance.” Lisa Cartwright (San Diego, California), performance lecture together with Christina Lammer at EMPAC (Troy, New York), May 2nd 2012. Video still: Christina Lammer, 2012