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Human Touch

by Art21

September 20, 2019

1:38:17 total runtime

Drips of paint falling across a canvas, erased charcoal, or a fingerprint left on a sculpture, all are lasting evidence of the human touch. Nuances both subtle and pronounced capture the handmade, one-of-a-kind essence of an artist’s work. This visceral visibility is what made Margaret Kilgallen’s large-scale paintings feel so personal. “My hand will always be imperfect, because it’s human,” mused Kilgallen. Remnants of human activity are also what steeps graffiti with intrigue for Barry McGee, acting as “a presence of other people doing things” on the fringe of society. 

A freehand approach, while natural for some, can be equally challenging. Marcel Dzama admits that “if paint dripped across my drawing I would try to incorporate it,” whereas Raymond Pettibon, with whom Dzama frequently collaborates, “would just leave the drops.” Drawing from an array of practices, this collection of films explores the organic nature of artists whose work is marked by the human touch. 

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