3 Hand Reel

By Aisling • • 25 May 2020

Currently on Exhibition in Chattanooga, Tennessee

8′ x 3′ x 3′

Painted Steel


A three hand reel is a traditional complex Irish Dance utilizing three dancers. The choreography strives to balance the interaction of these dancers and their visual presentation to the audience; however, the center figure frequently supports and interacts with the two exterior dancers.  In this piece, there are three forms; each form supports the other two by three bracing bars.

The number three is important through Irish mythology and Christian beliefs.  As with Triquetra, the number three has become representative of many things.  I focus on the number three to discuss the different aspects of my cultural identity.  There is the Irish culture in which I was raised, the American culture where I currently reside, and the hybrid created by the interaction of these cultures coming together.  Each aspect of my identity is supported by the other two; they echo the twists and curves of each other, moving in unison.  Yet they are detached, each one self-contained, with spaces between them.  It is not a seamless integration; there are spaces and voids that cannot be filled.

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