They bear the signs of being used a lot. Today the tips of my fingers and cuticles are stained with black ink from a morning of drawing a dancer, and dipping compressed charcoal into water toned with black ink.
People often comment that I have good working hands, and observe how they have been formed through working with clay, cement fondu and steel, and often keep traces of ink and charcoal. And then there are all those days and weeks and years of washing up after meals, and the general chores of being a householder and mother. Nail varnish looks out of place on my fingernails, and would not last long in a pristine condition anyway.
My hands are the gateways for my exploration of the world I live in, they help to give form to it: Such as manipulating steel to understand something about the flight of the albatross, or the majestic presence of the swan. Or cutting and shaping sheet steel to capture the power of the osprey as it swoops up its prey. And then there is the dance. My drawing hands are part of my dancing body. Through my hands I want to capture the delight I find in the shapes created by the movement of the body through space and time: whether it is on the stage, in rehearsals, people creating dances, or even people moving about in their everyday bodies.
It all comes back to the dance. This is when I will try and free my hands of the stains left by drawing or sculpting. They soon get stained again as I dance with my drawings.
Definitely no nail varnish..
More Details at http://www.bathabbey.org/whats-on/exhibitions
More details: http://www.peterborough-cathedral.org.uk/143/section.aspx/142/via_crucis