Is this what modern foreplay looks like in the age of the digital revolution? Is this what we’ve come to?
How many of you can look at these pictures and honestly say you haven’t spent a few nights in one of these compromising positions? Are we getting greater titillation from our tech at bedtime than the lovers we lay next to? What has happened to the days of screen-free intimacy?
This is precisely the message artist Rachel Lee Hovnanian was getting at with her genius photographic series and video installation called Foreplay from her exhibition Plastic Perfect.
“In my work, I explore how technology affects intimacy through installation, photography and sculpture. A curated online life may appear to be better than real life, and this has become a universal issue. Now we can be with someone next to us and at the same time be with someone else 5,900 miles away. All of this is exciting and very seductive. I felt it was important to take a hard look at the nature of this distraction–technology providing a gratifying false mindfulness.”
I asked Hovnanian about the couples in these pictures. “One of the couples is no longer together,” she said. “Perhaps technology pulled them apart–they remain a couple in Foreplay, forever online and distracted in bed.”
I recently heard there’s even a new word for people that don’t take their tech devices to bed. They’re called “disconnectionists” and are defined as a people who advocate spending time away from online activities, for mental, spiritual or sexual rejuvenation. Sounds good to me.
So if you take your tech to bed and, like me, think these images are a little too close to home, you might want to try some tech-free couples therapy! As Hovnanian says, “perhaps we need time to pause and look at technology’s impact on intimacy, and examine the resulting loss of intimacy that we have.” I agree and I’m up for that but before I slip into something sexy and crawl under the covers for a snuggle, just give me a second to check my Instagram feed and return some tweets.
Check out the exhibition catalog for Plastic Perfect at Leila Heller Gallery and for more about Rachel Hovnanian’s incredible work and upcoming shows go to her website. Follow GLAM4GOOD and check out more stylish stories that make you think here.