Please Touch

Art normally exists at a distance, with the maxim 'please don’t touch' ubiquitous across galleries and exhibitions. Artist Gawain Hewitt makes sculptures that are playable. Beautiful forms that exist both as form in themselves, but also to be held and touched, and in doing so to unlock sound.

When Gawain approached me to photograph his sonic creations, I wanted to demonstrate the tactile nature of them, so I developed the idea to show Gawain's hand in the photographs to illustrate the touch or command element of each artwork.

Though I've known Gawain for many years and am very familiar with his work, it wasn't until I started to place the artworks together that I saw such a consistency in scale, exquisite detail and form.

For such complex structures that have to stand up to extended public usage and provide very different sonic purposes, they still manage to hold a delicacy and curiosity. Also, it is incredible just how much bespoke electronics are hidden away inside the structures! All are perfectly self-contained pieces of sonic art.

This series of photographs and more about Gawain's fabulous work was published as a story over at Creative Boom.

Please Touch artwork © Gawain Hewitt. Photography by Emile Holba.