Drawing Hands (1948) by Maurits Cornelis Escher

Drawing Hands - Maurits Cornelis Escher - 1948

Artwork Information

TitleDrawing Hands
ArtistMaurits Cornelis Escher
Dimensions28.2 x 33.2 cm (11 1/8 x 13 1/8 in.)
Art MovementSurrealism
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About Drawing Hands

Dutch artist Maurits Cornelis Escher created the lithograph Drawing Hands in 1948. The artwork is an example of a “strange loop,” a paradoxical system that self-referentially repeats with no beginning or end. Escher’s unique style often employed mathematics to create his works, and this piece highlights the contradiction of representing three-dimensional objects on a two-dimensional plane.

Escher was primarily known for his work as a printmaker and became famous for his mathematically-inspired designs. Drawing Hands is one of his most famous works, showcasing an impossible object where two hands are drawing each other. The lithograph features impeccable techniques where Escher’s mastery of shading adds depth and gives the illusion of three-dimensionality.

Drawing Hands has become one of Escher’s most popular works, enjoyed by millions around the world because it defies traditional artistic representation while maintaining an exacting sense of proportion and detail. While born on June 17, 1898, in the Netherlands and passing away on March 27, 1972, Escher remains one of art history’s most iconic figures whose work continues to inspire new generations to appreciate its unique beauty and mathematical complexity.

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