Two women embracing in an unlikely domestic setting hints at an underlying story. Little is shown of their environment, adding to the enigma. They are not in a photo studio, bedroom or bathroom, yet they are unclothed. A window behind the bodies filters light into the room ethereally. The light is more diffused than dramatic, yet sparse shadows in the crevices delineate the two bodies. Subtle, warm, rose tones wash over the entire piece. The figures are warmer than the light-washed room in which they embrace. The piece of subtle yet erotic photography invites us to contemplate the circumstances of their relationship.
The women’s gazes are not focused on each other. One looks upward contemplatively, the other at the viewer, inviting us into their trust. One affectionately strokes the other’s hair. The hands do not explore, making the gesture more affectionate than carnal. There is a level of acknowledgement in one woman’s gaze as she looks at the viewer, as though she has more to reveal. The figures are pressed firmly against one another without inhibition in a caress that is more sororal than passionate. They are calm and comfortable in one another’s embrace, despite their focus on distant concepts.
Two bodies intertwined and interacting conveys a concept, in this case the affection and closeness conveyed through an embrace. The way the bodies interact, whether they acknowledge each other, and the setting in which they are placed are crucial to the piece. Egon Schiele’s 1911 piece Two Women Embracing shows a similar subject matter featuring two women lying in a bed, though it is more erotically charged. As far as erotic photography goes, this composition is moderate, yet sure to initiate contemplation.