ella dreyfus
Intimate Distance is a series of photographic portraits that situate strangers in relationship to one another, across a dark space, where strong emotions are portrayed as tense, affective encounters.

The photographic studio is a quiet, dark place of intimacy, where feelings are often revealed between the subject and the artist. Within this private space I photographed people one-by-one, alone with me, or sometimes with a third person with us in the studio. As they told me their thoughts they displayed various moods, and I recorded their different facial expressions and body language.

Later I looked through hundreds of these photographs and selected individual portraits that showed strong emotions and resonated with intensity and interest. Then, I paired portraits of single people, who did not know each, together with other portraits, thereby forming dynamic partnerships and fabricating fictitious relationships. I deliberately placed them in close proximity to one another, positioning them across a dark, intimate, liminal space.

Intimate Distance invites viewers to make their own interpretations of the scenarios presented in the double portraits, encouraging new narratives and meanings to emerge.

Intimate Distance was created at the Banff Research in Culture Visual Arts Residency at the Banff Centre in Alberta, Canada in 2014.