VALENTINE’S DAY EDITION – ROBERT MAPPLETHORPE, EMBRACE, 1982

Valentine’s Day is loved by some and hated by some others, but we wanted to celebrate this day in a moment of our history when love is so much needed.

The love we are celebrating is just love without any label.

This photograph symbolizes the most generic definition of love one could ever think of: two people hugging. They are from two different ethnic origins (but we don’t know which ones) and their gender (if binary) is impossible to understand. And we are meant not to wonder about these questions, but just admire the love and affection that exist between the two people.

Robert Mapplethorpe is a famous photographer, eve though his work is very controversial, due to the “shocking” erotic and violent photos of people interacting with objects (you can see them just by googling them). In this case though, he is really gentle, and the light falls on the skin and the muscles of the two people in a very weightless way, almost caressing them.

We celebrate every kind of love, with no gender, no sexual orientation, no race involved.

Moreover, these two people are not kissing or having sex or having a generic demonstration of romantic love between them, showing that love is not necessarily romantic. It can be any kind of relationship and it is worth it at the same way.

Love can be painful, disappointing, tiring sometimes, but the only thing we can (and have to) do is to embrace it.

M.C.

 

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