© Evan Baden
With new technologies come new ways of thinking, acting, and reacting, our ability to connect with one another instantly using our now-ubiquitous cellular phones – and the privacy that comes with that use – has lulled us into a sense of security.
The thought that what we send to each other will stay just between us. This new connection and the sense of security it provides, for the digital native generation, has brought with it a new definition of intimacy. We no longer believe we require the physical touch of generations past. Instead, we demand that images and videos be transmitted from one private space to another. To be enjoyed now, and forever to come. But that sense of privacy is merely an illusion. For while it is easy to create these images and videos, it is even easier to transmit them to someone else. Images can be forwarded, forwarded again, posted, and reposted. As long as there is someone willing to press ‘send’, there is someone willing to look.
Each image in Technically Intimate has its origination in the real world. I find an image Online that has been posted, most likely without the creator’s knowledge. Then, using social media and classifieds sites like Craigslist, I find volunteers willing to work with me to recreate the found images. My images are not a duplication, but rather, a reinterpretation of the moment of the found image’s creation.
The images in Technically Intimate underscore the inherent lack of privacy that our newfound technology is imbued with. The poses in my images emphasize the repetitiveness of the sexual images that pervade our society while the rooms that the scenes are staged in and the ages of the room’s occupant clash with those highly sexualized poses, causing an unease in the viewing of those pictured while reminding the viewer that with every leap we take in technology and convenience there is an equally deep crevasse into which we can fall.
Evan Baden (1985) earned his MFA from Columbia College in Chicago in 2014. Since 2006 he has created four bodies of work: The Illuminati, Technically Intimate, Under the Influence, and A Conversão de São Paulo. They have been widely exhibited internationally with museums and galleries throughout Europe and the United States. His work is held in public collections such as the Walker Art Center, Milwaukee Art Museum, FOAM Amsterdam, the Finnish Museum of Photography, the Museum of Contemporary Photography, and the Kinsey Institute. His work has been featured in numerous publications including TIME, The Guardian, FOAM, New York Magazine, Le Monde, D della Repubblica, Geo, and DIE ZEIT. He has been the recipient of the Jerome Fellowship for Emerging Artists and the Stuart Abelson Graduate Research Fellowship. He has been a finalist for the McKnight Fellowship for Photography as well as nominated for the Baum Award for Emerging American Photographers and the PDN 30. !
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