Extending the Physical Through Virtual Interaction
Red Rubber Road @redrubberroad is an ongoing collaborative and performative body of work by AnaHell and Nathalie Dreier established in 2015. These self-portraits portray both artists interacting and merging with one another and their surroundings in a powerful embrace of the unusual and the carnal. With their bodies, they compose reflections on intimacy and the boundaries of the self within relationships – the stages in close bonding where entities and identities mingle to the point that their existences blur and their own borders disappear.
Up until 2020, the shooting practice of the collective has always required both photographers – and protagonists – to be present and interact with each other directly. When the COVID 19 pandemic hit at the beginning of 2020, they each found themselves quarantined in different countries and turned to digital devices in an aim to forge a new way to continue their collaboration.
Shooting within the constraints of their individual living spaces, they began to investigate how a practice that was brought to life by physical closeness could be carried on in times of social distancing.
In Together A Part, the artists interact and merge with one another solely through a screen, thus transforming the screen’s narrative: it is no longer merely a window to the virtual world, but a concrete object that metabolizes through the display, connecting, extending and morphing them in a physical way.
By blurring their identities within these new parameters, the collective is able to mirror the sometimes cunning deception of digital interaction in relationships, intimacy and sexuality.