In a city whose very existence hinges on rising sea levels, a contemporary sculptor is drawing attention to the threat of climate change in a piece that's captivated critics, curators, and visitors at the Venice Biennale. At the Ca' Sagredo Hotel, Lorenzo Quinn erected his profound sculpture of two hands emerging from the canal and latching onto the hotel's structure. The piece is titled "Support."
According to a press release from Halcyon Gallery, "Support" is meant to symbolize the human ability to better and destroy the world. Quinn explained, "I wanted to sculpt what is considered the hardest and most technically challenging part of the human body. The hand holds so much power — the power to love, to hate, to create, to destroy."
The Rome-born artist currently lives in Barcelona, and he completed the sculpture in a studio a few hours outside of the city. In an interview with Mashable, Quinn said the sculpture just took three weeks to complete. In addition, the hands were modeled after his 11-year-old son's. On Instagram, Quinn said the sculpture is made out of a metal structure and expanded foam, which is then painted and covered in polyurethane.
Quinn ultimately hopes his piece will alert the public to the potential crisis Venice faces. He said, "Venice is a floating art city that has inspired cultures for centuries, but to continue to do so it needs the support of our generation and future ones, because it is threatened by climate change and time decay."