Friday, November 1, 2013

Touching Strangers

This past week or so, I have felt particularly conscious of our shared humanity and the ability of a big city like London to impact the way that we interact with (or completely fail to interact with or even notice) the people around us, despite the fact that we are often surrounded by others (and, in London, this often occurs in very small spaces).  In fact, in London, it feels like an unwritten rule that "thou shalt not interact with strangers" and one should keep to one's self, even though this feels so unnatural (and I'm not convinced that Londoner's really want to revert to this - see the behaviour of Londoners during the 2012 Olympics).

I really took notice when I saw the video below.  For his series Touching Strangers, photographer Richard Renaldi seeks out two people completely unknown to each other and photographs them intimately posing as friends, family or lovers.  The result is sometimes awkward, but often emotional and natural.

A few of Richard Renaldi's subjects were interviewed in this video and they even go so far as to say that, after posing with someone that they do not know, they feel that they care for that person, that it broke down barriers and that it was nice to feel comfort.

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