Touching Strangers

A photo by Richard Renaldi depicting two strangers; An adult male holding a young girl in his arms.

Touching Strangers is an exhibition featuring photographic works by Photography & Imaging alum Richard Renaldi (BFA ’90). The show opened May 24, 2018 and will remain on view in the Lobby of New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts until September 29, 2018.

Since 2007, Richard Renaldi has been working on a series of photographs that involve approaching and asking complete strangers to physically interact while posing together for a portrait. Working on the street with a large format 8-by-10-inch view camera, Renaldi encounters the subjects for his photographs in towns and cities all over the United States. He pairs them up and invites them to pose together, intimately, in ways that people are usually taught to reserve for their close friends and loved ones.

Renaldi creates spontaneous and fleeting relationships between strangers for the camera, often pushing his subjects beyond their comfort levels. These relationships may only last for the moment the shutter is released, but the resulting photographs are moving and provocative, and raise profound questions about the possibilities for positive human connection in a diverse society.

This exhibition includes thirty-two photographs from the series, curated by Ann Pallesen, director of Photographic Center Northwest, Seattle. For more details on Touching Strangers, visit

Gallery hours are 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays, and noon to 5 p.m. Saturdays. Admission is free. Photo identification is required for access to the building. For more information, visit or call 212.998.1930.