Intimate X-Ray Portraits of Couples by Ayako Kanda and Mayuka Hayashi
It’s always interesting when artists explore intimacy because of how it affects us all on a primitive and emotional level. Japanese student-artists Ayako Kanda and Mayuka Hayashi have created a prize-winning series of images that explore our relationships with each other in an interesting way – by using x-ray images to strip away the skin, hair and flesh that we usually associate with intimate contact.
Kanda and Hayashi used full-body x-ray imaging and CT scan systems to picture four different couples as they rested intimately together. The result is a series of ghostly white skeletons tangles in loving embraces. The images are so striking because the poses they strike represent recognizable human intimacy and closeness, but the x-ray images represent death or clinical, medical coldness. We are trained to take the intimacy we share with our doctors when they x-ray our bodies for granted, which is perhaps why it’s so unsettling to see x-ray images capturing actual human intimacy.
The revealing and exploratory work was part of these students’ thesis project at Musashino Art University. The students also won the Mitsubishi Chemical Junior Designer Award.