"Ways of the Hand"
              Sofia Lemos
              When lost for words, hands are tools to point, wave, and otherwise indicate meaning. While much of this form of communication is intuitive, firsthand knowledge is highly performative: as hands trace airborne paths, their gestures form recognizable patterns that may relay receptiveness or fear, in a cognizant yet affective process of perceiving the world. Maurice Merleau-Ponty addresses the exchange between the hand and the object it touches as a sentient and sensible one: “If I touch with my left hand my right hand while it touches an object, the right hand object is not the right hand touching: the first is an intertwining of bones, muscles, and flesh bearing down on a point in space, the second traverses space as a rocket in order to discover the exterior object in its place.”), 92.] The result is an “ambiguous set-up” in which both hands alternate between touching and being touched, exceeding the logic of ambiguity: as one hand touches the other touching an object, neither the right nor the left hand nor the object can be unequivocally discerned. “Ways of the Hand,” the inaugural exhibition of the Madrilenian gallery Maisterravalbuena in Lisbon, curated by the Lisbon-based curatorial duo João Mourão and Luís Silva, …

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