Winter 2004

Abandoned gloves

Collected by Ivan Chermayeff, Chermayeff & Geismar Inc., New York.

For years I have collected gloves. Usually just one (and only occasionally a pair) that I find in the street. Most are women’s gloves that have fallen from a pocket or handbag while the owner was getting in and out of a taxi. The pairs are more likely to be men’s work gloves that have fallen from the back pocket of a labourer or construction worker. The gloves land in the street where they are then run over by traffic and flattened into a new shape. Pressed beneath the wheel of a tyre and exposed to the elements, they acquire a patina until each, like a snowflake, is totally unique.

I am drawn to gloves for their ability to conceal, and thereby reveal, a part of human anatomy associated with myriad activities: from cooking and cleaning to drawing and writing. In my collages I have sought to celebrate these meanings so that the images underscore – through forms and materials – our essential human connection.

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