By Richard Renaldi
Since 2007, Richard Renaldi has been working on a series of photographs that involve approaching & asking complete strangers to physically interact while posing together for a portrait. Working on the street with a large-format, 8-by-10-inch view camera, Renaldi encounters the subjects for his photographs in towns & cities all over the United States. He pairs them up & invites them to pose together, intimately, in ways that people are usually taught to reserve for their close friends & loved ones. Renaldi creates spontaneous & fleeting relationships between strangers for the camera, often pushing his subjects beyond their comfort levels. These relationships may only last for the moment the shutter is released, but the resulting photographs are moving & provocative, & raise profound questions about the possibilities for positive human connection in a diverse society.