Scarborough Hand Process

This is how we made it

Everything starts from the idea

Idea of Scarborough Hand

Prototyping Stainless Steel Structural Frame Design

The artwork is a 3.5 Metre, Ethereal 3D Hand made from Stainless steel/ Aluminium plates, secured on four stainless steel columns, symbolising the casting of sand into the sea. In the palm of this hand and running down to the ground, will be a perforated cladding, within which will house LED lights. These LEDs will simulate the effect of sand being poured out of the hand, to the ground below.

Artforms were approached to rescue the project when the bulk of the budget had been misspent on elaborate lighting consultation. We employed the successful technique we had previously used to build the Ethereal Hand in the southern suburb of Spearwood.

Prototype of Scarborough Hand of Kylie Graham

A 3D model was generated from photos of a human hand in the desired pose. We used software to section the images and devise a complex 3D jigsaw of stainless steel/aluminium plates secured on four stainless steel columns, symbolising the casting of sand into the sea. The plates were carefully welded into their individual positions and the hand gradually grew.

Prototype of Scarborough Hand

Building and Visualising the Concept

The 3D hand sculpture was fabricated in stainless steel and aluminium, with LED Lighting. Poles holding the hand up have been perforated with LED light, the light starts in the palm of the hand and continues down the poles.

We experimented with methods of lighting the ‘sand’ in the palm of the hand and in the supporting pillars which represent the sand pouring between the fingers. Perforated cladding was handmade for the palm of the hand and to run down the columns. Within these are housed the LED lighting system simulating the effect of sand pouring to the ground below. The LED lighting system can be adjusted for colour and timing patterns.

Sourcing the materials based on design

Materials Fabrication


Illuminating with LED

We combined LEDs with a timed light chaser circuit to replicate the effect of falling sand at night time. This light controller does not function until it gets dark, meaning the LEDs will not work during the day.

This piece utilises the latest in LED technology to provide light which lasts for thousands of hours without the need to change globes. LEDs also provide almost instantaneous light, making then perfect for chasing light displays. They also consume considerably less power than incandescent or even fluorescent light bulbs, making this piece both spectacular and environmentally friendly.

Delivery and Installation

The Hand was craned into site and connected up. The lighting system is visible at night in the columns and the palm of the hand between layers of golden anodised aluminium.


Scarborough Hand - Nice Photo
Scarborough Hand - Night Illumination
Scarborough Hand - Australian Public Art