About Goltzius: the Tell-Tale Hand

Herlinde Spahr

Journal of the Print World, Fall 2009

When a toddler, Hendrick Golzius (1558 - 1617) burned his hands by falling into hot ashes. It crippled his right hand for life.  I explore how this experience led him to depict the hand in a striking way that also relates to printmaking. By using a reversed point of view,  Golzius captures a figure seen from the back, exposing thereby the hidden hand.