Landscapes of Global Capital
tv globe icon link to home Signifying Clusters: Hands
The handshake of capital
Precapital deals
What are we doin' here?
The global handshake
Signifying possibility
Gestures of human concern
Hands of parental care
Hypersignifiers of expressivity
The finger of knowledge
The panoptic finger

A series of Oppenheimer television ads focus on individual hands to signify subjectivity. The hands here function as a metonym for the persona of the speaking subject. In each ad the camera focuses on the detailed movements of the speaker's hands while giving testimony to his or her life and how Oppenheimer meets his/her specific financial needs. Each subject is defined by the expressivity of the hands in relationship to an object - a piano keyboard, a dog, a camera, a child's hand, a kayak paddle, and Legos. The held object represents the thing or life style about which the speaker most cares - the activity that defines one's inner being. The expressivity of each set of hands signifies the 'soul' of the speaker. In order to push the authenticity quotient higher the ads are shot in black and white. At the conclusion of each ad the hands morph into the Oppenheimer logo, a square of four hands holding a wrist.


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© Copyright 1998-2003
Robert Goldman, Stephen Papson, Noah Kersey