Art & Design

Written by Helen van Raaij

Image by: Hands

The anatomy of Hands in visual arts

Hands are an exceptional part of our bodies with different functions like gross and fine motor movements, but also in communication they play an important role. Body language and sign language involve hand movement.

As human anatomy is frequently seen as a piece of art, our hands can be seen as a masterpiece. A few funny facts about your hands: 

  • Your hands are the most active part of your body
  • That the ability to touch the tip of all our fingers with your thumb is unique to the human body?
  • Your fingernails grow about the same amount as the continents move every year
  • Hands are a symbol of protection and hope.

Bernini, Jean-Baptiste Carpeaux and Michelangelo were, like many intrigued by the human body. Marble sculptures like The Rape of Proserpina (Bernini), Ugolino and His Sons (Jean-Baptiste Carpeaux) and Michelangelo's David, show when only looking at the hands muscles, veins, nails and skin that are extremely detailed. They show us hands are a piece of art not to think lightly of. The position, proportion and details of the hands need to be perfect. If it wasn’t for their white color one would swear they are real.

Image by: Art

Tags: Human anatomy, Anatomy & Art, Michelangelo, Bernini, Hands

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