Hands (Diptych)

Hands (Diptych)

Glenn Ligon, American, 1960-
Born: Bronx, NY
Work Locations: New York, NY
silkscreen ink on canvas
Accession Number
Credit Line
Gift from Vicki and Kent Logan to the Collection of the Denver Art Museum

Glenn Ligon (American, born 1960 in the Bronx. Lives and works in New York City)
Hands (Diptych), 1997
Silkscreen ink on canvas
78 x 276 in.
Gift from Vicki and Kent Logan to the Collection of the Denver Art Museum, 2001.776. Courtesy Regen Projects, Los Angeles © Glenn Ligon.

overall height: 78 in, 198.1200 cm; overall width: 276 in, 701.0400 cm; height: 78 in, 198.1200 cm; width: 144 in, 365.7600 cm
Modern and Contemporary Art
Modern and Contemporary Art

The “Hands” series is a body of work dedicated to the Million Man March (Washington D.C., October 1995). The event called for unity, solidarity and endorsement of family values among African-American men. “Hands (Diptych)” consists of two panels: one entirely black and the other comprised of raised hands, a gesture of solidarity, multiplied, enlarged and silk screen printed several times over with thick layers of ink. The canvas presents a fractured and therefore ambiguous version of the original, signature photograph of the march. The artist emphasizes the gap between the collective and the individual by juxtaposing the fragmented and decontextualized image of hands with the large expanse of black. The empty black field in “Hands (Diptych)” is Ligon’s depiction of this failure. The enhanced impression of the voidmanifests silence, thus, giving visibility to the voices of those absent from the march.

Glenn Ligon lives and works in New York. He received a Bachelor of Arts from Wesleyan University in 1982 and attended the Whitney Museum Independent Study Program in 1985.

Courtesy Regen Projects, Los Angeles © Glenn Ligon

Exhibition History
  • “Disruption: Works from the Vicki and Kent Logan Collection” — Denver Art Museum, 1/13/2022