In Like a Pearl in my Hand [Artist Book].
Rotterdam, The Netherlands: Carina Hesper, 2013. Limited Edition. Boxed Loose Plates. At once subtle and brutal, a monumental work and a brilliant use of thermoreactive ink.
The blind will touch your face to see you. This book will force you to make that same experience if you want to see the blind.
"A book completely covered with black thermo chromatic ink — you literally need to touch the pages to see the portraits of visually impaired Chinese children underneath the ink." [Artist statement]
"Carina Hesper reveals a side of China that is mostly hidden from the outside world. Many parents in China give up their new-born child when they find out that it is visually impaired. This is a consequence of the one-child policy (formally changed to a two-child-policy in 2015) and the loss of face associated with having a child with a disability. Touched by these children’s fate, Carina visited different locations of the Bethel orphanage in Beijing, where she photographed children with a visual impairment.
Like a Pearl in my Hand is a multi-sensory experience encouraging social awareness. It is presented as a limited and signed edition box with 32 prints, all fully coated in black thermochromatic ink. This ink turns transparent by the warmth of a human hand which is around 20-25 degrees Celsius. When touching the prints the underlying portraits are revealed.
In Like a Pearl in my Hand form and content are brought together in a unique and interactive way; the blind children, their concealment from society and the touch that is needed to see their portraits. The viewer experiences what it is like to be without sight and becomes actively involved in the fate of a group of vulnerable children.
Additional reflective notes by Bettine Vriesekoop and Hannes Wallrafen are presented in a separate inlay, both in Chinese and English.
The book adds a tactile dimension to the medium of photography – a medium that is predominantly about seeing and being seen." [artist statement]
A portion of proceeds are being provided to the Bethel orphanage in Beijing. Fine in Fine Box. Minor shelf/edge wear, else bright and clean. Loose set of prints with printed essay pamphlet laid into a pale blue printed box. fo. np. Illus. (color prints). Numbered limited edition. Signed by the artist. Item #11000