Flesh Love is a photography project by Tokyo-based artist Photographer Hal. Over the years, Photographer Hal has explored the themes of love and attachment by taking photographs of couples in enclosed spaces across multiple projects. For the Flesh Love series, Photographer Hal began to vacuum seal couples together in plastic wrap as a way to examine modern relationships. Photographer Hal tells us more about the story behind his work below.
《Flesh Love》是由东京艺术家Photographer Hal创作的一个摄影项目。多年来，Photographer Hal曾在多个摄影项目中，用镜头捕捉情侣在封闭空间的照片，探讨爱情和迷恋的主题。在《Flesh Love》系列中，Photographer Hal将情侣装在一个巨型真空密封袋中，寓意对现代男女关系的一种审视。Photographer Hal向我们分享了更多关于这些作品背后的故事。
“When you embrace your lover, sometimes you wish to melt right into them. To realize this wish, I’ve been photographing couples in small and cramped spaces like motels and bathtubs. As my work has become more and more intense, I’ve noticed that communication is indispensable.”
“I go to Kabukicho in Shinjuku, underground bars in Shibuya and many other places which are full of activity like luscious night time bee hives. When I see a couple of interest I will begin to negotiate. I’m sure that many people initially think of my proposal as unusual or even look through me like I am completely invisible, but I always push forward with my challenge to them. The models appear from all walks of life, and individually, have included musicians, dancers, strippers, laborers, restaurant and bar managers, photographers, businessmen and businesswomen, the unsettled and the unemployed, and so on.”
“This time, I reached the point of photographing couples in vacuum-sealed packs in a set that I’ve constructed in my own kitchen. The lights are in the ceiling, so I just flip one switch and have everything ready. I have a few different colored paper backgrounds, which I leave rolled up in the corner. After the couple gets in the vacuum pack, I suck the air out with a vacuum cleaner until there’s none left. This gives me ten seconds to take the shot. In this extremely limited time I can’t release the shutter more than twice. I’ve been in there myself, and the fear I felt was overwhelming.”
“As the shooting continues over multiple takes, the pressure of the vacuum seal grows stronger. At the same time, the two bodies start to communicate, and whether through unevenness of limbs or the curve of joints they begin to draw a shape of what they want to express. The two lovers draw closer until they finally transform into a single being. Looking at these vacuum-sealed packs of love, we can imagine a more peaceful world. For me, the vacuum pack is only a means: the important thing is connecting to someone.”