What is absent can sometimes become far more fascinating to us than what is present. I am on the first floor of the building, slowly walking towards a sculpture of a female saint, glimpses of whom I can see through the open doors between us. The moment I get closer, she disappears. 

Not literally. What I notice now are her missing hands, it gives her a strange attraction, a power she acquired over time. Impossible to interpret, but undoubtedly charismatic. She is no more than what we see: a woman wrapped in a wooden drapery of a long, frilly robe. Limbless, without a past, absolutely present. Her head is tilted to one side, her stare directed upwards. When interpreting art, the hands are often the key. Paintings or sculptures remain silent, but they can communicate with us through symbolism;  the depiction of hands often holds symbolic meaning. Certain gestures, delicate coordination of fingers, objects placed in a palm: those who master this language can dive deeper into the art. Would a sculpture feel the phantom pain of the missing hand? The attribute is forever lost, the code won’t be cracked – only a dark mysterious cave inside of the sleeve remains. And that’s exactly what makes her so beautiful; she became a kōan, an infinite question.

(Translated from Slovak by Barbora Tomíková)