Big Hand

Hand from a colossal statue in the courtyard of the Musei Capotolini in Rome.

Here’s a photo of a disembodied hand, a surviving fragment of an ancient statue, to be found (at least as of August ‘97) in the courtyard of the Musei Capitolini at Piazza di Campdoglio in Rome. There must be many, many thousands of similar images out there similarly snapped by a significant proportion of the Museums’ very numerous visitors.

Ninety-seven was the year I finally got my hands on some of the desirable gadgets of the day. A JVC ‘Micro Component’ CD player (and speakers) and a Canon IXUS compact ‘APS’ camera. The IXUS was a great-looking little thing – all brushed metal and black plastic – with a nifty retracting zoom lens. It wasn’t the sturdiest device, however, and after four years' light use it conked out.

The ‘Advanced Photographic System’ must have been one of the last hurrahs of film photography, before the digital imaging juggernaut rolled in. I held on to about a dozen of the exposed APS films I’d shot, which, a decade or so later, I sent off to be digitally scanned. The ‘big hand’ was one of the frames in the first roll I ran through the IXUS. APS frames had a rather elongated 7:4 aspect ratio, which I’ve slightly cropped here.