Matsubara Naoko, Flute, 1974.
In 1973 print artist Naoko Matsubara began working on a series of woodcuts entitled In Praise of Hands, inspired by the busy hands of her baby son. Over the years, the series grew into a wider celebration of the human hand, engaged in dance, sport or a range of creative acts. The vibrant works explore movement and stillness, colour and form, mood and symbolism. In the wake of the COVID pandemic, the works have taken on powerful new meanings – especially concerning the importance of touch and the enforced absence of touch.This exhibition presents highlights from an artistic collaboration between Matsubara and prize-winning poet Penny Boxall, who has responded to the woodcuts in a series of poems. The woodcuts and poems are published in an accompanying book.