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At November 26 the Welcome Collection (London) presents their 'Hands' event!!
Can you imagine a society without hands? We sense, create and communicate with them. Join us for this social event for the incurably curious and celebrate these vital parts of our bodies across four floors of Wellcome Collection.
• Revel in the mystery of hands with palmistry and neuroscience illusions.
• Try out some nail art.
• Get dexterous with games and computers from different ages - and paper, scissors, stone.
• Enjoy an installation produced by young people from HCA, Coram’s Fields, KCBNA and artist Elaine Duigenan.
• Try out some surgeon’s tools, and see how steady your hands are.
• Explore the wonders of handwriting in the Wellcome Library, and meet a palaeographer and a graphologist.
• Play a piano and see your digits up close.
• Enjoy the physical theatre performance of The Articulate Hand with Andrew Dawson. Performances start at 20.00 and 21.45. Tickets are available on the night of the event only.
• Hear from evolution expert Christophe Soligo on the difference between the hands of apes and humans. Tickets are available on the night of the event only.
• Chris McManus will uncover the science of left and right handedness. Tickets are available on the night of the event only. (BSL interpreted)
This event is FREE, drop in anytime.
From medicine to mesmerism, magic to mannerisms, visitors will find out about the curious history of digits, palms, fingers and thumbs, and put their own to use, as we celebrate the organs that shape the world around us.
We will have scientists, artists, palmists and magicians at hand for discussions, performances and, of course, hands-on activities, all designed to make us look afresh at our body. 'Manipulate', 'manoeuvre' and 'manufacture' are all words deriving from the Latin word 'manus', meaning hand. These creative appendages allow us to make, touch and feel, but they also hold mystical and cultural significance. For one night only, visitors can explore a digital age that goes back millennia.
In auditorium talks, evolution expert Christophe Soligo will explain how we got our hands in the first place, while Chris McManus from UCL will uncover the science of left- and right-handedness. The beauty of hands will be explored through a nail bar, while Roger Kneebone and surgeons from the teaching unit at Imperial College London will be showing how hands save lives. Visitors will be able to handle surgical tools and, using specialist training aids, try them out on a friend.
Healing hands and the mystery of palms will bring together Amber Garnet, who continues a long tradition of palmistry, with the extraordinary experiments of Birkbeck's Matthew Longo, in which a simple coordination of movement can make a rubber hand feel like one's own. Also, prosthetist Ian Jones will be demonstrating the advances in replacement hands.
In the café, expect to see hand-to-hand battles over scissors-paper-stone, thumb wars and arcade game classics, as challenges to our digital dexterity are mapped over time. In the atrium there will be a piano with the soundtrack for the evening provided by visiting fingers.
Examples of handwriting written by older hands from the Wellcome Library will be on display, including the letters of Admiral Nelson before and after he lost his right hand. A palaeographer will compare the writing of different eras, and visitors will be able to try their own hand with a quill. The secrets left by their pens will be unravelled by a graphologist who will be analysing handwriting throughout the evening.
Andrew Dawson, acclaimed choreographer, performer and director, will be giving performances of 'The Articulate Hand', a mesmerising show uncovering the beauty, grace and psychological effects of hand impairment. Dawson's work has been funded by a Wellcome Trust Arts Award.
Another work produced for the event has been created by 14-19-year-olds from Holborn Community Association, Coram's Fields, King's Cross and Brunswick Neighbourhood Association with the help of artist Elaine Duigenan. They will create an immersive space filled with clapping and doodles.
Around the building there will be a sleight-of-hand magician, demonstrating how the hands can outwit the eyes. Mystery guests will be circulating with secret handshakes initiating visitors into the bonds and language of greeting.
A Lightbox display of pictures from Wellcome Images, which runs until February 2011, will lead visitors through a colourful history including Valentine Greatrakes, Franz Antoine Mesmer, sex scandals in late-Victorian massage parlours, crossed palms, fortune telling, sign language, scripts and sickness.
Visitors can also see 'High Society', Wellcome Collection's major winter exhibition, exploring the role of mind-altering drugs in history and culture. Tom Quick of UCL and Nick Barber, Professor of the Practice of Pharmacy, will be in the gallery showing how pills can be hand-made.
A feast for the fingers, and a cause for applause, 'Hands' runs at Wellcome Collection from 19.00 to 23.00 on 26 November. Entry is free. Drop in anytime.
Wellcome Collection is a free visitor destination for the incurably curious. Located at 183 Euston Road, London, Wellcome Collection explores the connections between medicine, life and art in the past, present and future. The building comprises three gallery spaces, a public events programme, the Wellcome Library, a café, a bookshop, conference facilities and a members' club.
Wellcome Collection is part of the Wellcome Trust, a global charitable foundation dedicated to achieving extraordinary improvements in human and animal health. The Trust supports the brightest minds in biomedical research and the medical humanities. Its breadth of support includes public engagement, education and the application of research to improve health. It is independent of both political and commercial interests.
Last edited by Martijn (admin) on Sun Nov 21, 2010 10:49 am; edited 1 time in total
183 Euston Road, London (nov 26, 19:00 - 23:00)
Hands....where would we be without them?
Tabitha Langton-Lockton finds out at The Wellcome Collection.
A report from the november 26, 2010 event in London:
Can you imagine a society without hands? Frankly, no. For this would mean a world without Twitter, Facebook and YouTube; heavens forbid a world without art and literature, for how would we paint, write and type?
The Wellcome Collection plays host to an event, 'Hands', celebrating these odd looking appendages with an evening of music, magic and science. In the foyer visitors play the piano and pinball machine whilst waiting for the main event to open. Gigantic cardboard hands loom by the entrance and people animatedly express themselves with their hands as they queued for the ticketed events. Hands are everywhere.
A talk by Chris McManus takes place in the auditorium. Accompanied by a British Sign Language interpreter, McManus explains the science that differs between the left and right-handed. As a right-handed individual, I was disappointed to find out that all ‘lefties’ were not in fact evil as I had previously been led to believe. A later talk by the evolution expert Christophe Soligo explains how hands have developed and changed over time. Both talks are educational and thought-provoking.
The wonder of hands continues to be celebrated on all floors. Climbing the stairs, white-gloved men greet visitors with a shake of the hand and subtly (but unsuccessfully) try to place a sticker on their arms without them noticing.
On the first floor, areas dedicated to the event could be found whilst wandering around the current exhibitions. The Nail Bar proves popular with the ladies (although I did spy a suited man waiting patiently for his turn) whilst the prosthetics and medical tools appeal more to the gruesome individuals.
A neuroscientist asks me to place my right hand inside a black box and look at a rubber hand. He then proceeded to poke and stroke me resulting in my questioning my senses and walking away feeling distinctly confused. Had he been poking my hand or the rubbery hand?
Turning a corner I found what I was looking for - the palmistry section. After having my palms read by an amateur reader from the Collection library I plucked up the courage to ask if he could see children in my future. “I think that you might have two”. “Damn” I muttered, “I was hoping for at least three”.
The second floor becomes a surgery for the evening. Here, surgeons from Imperial College perform the art of stitching a wound, whilst showing the crowd how hands save lives. Visitors were able to try their hands at surgery and to see for themselves just how steady the hand must be to perform operations.
‘Hands’ shows the visitor just how essential they are in everyday life. The evening appealed to all ages and amused and educated its audience.
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