Like a dish, the instructions can be interpreted differently, producing an endless number of variations still centered around the same concept. To make the image, the ingredients Barrera lists are “a camera (preferably full-frame), a tripod if necessary, natural or available light, a location, two people, masks, telephones to speak.” He also provides recommendations for scheduling and shooting, as well as tips on where the photographer should stand and how the figures should appear in the frame.
Seen together, one begins to notice the nuance of each encounter beyond the immediate similarities. In Antoine Séguin’s photograph in Square Fougères Sud, Paris, the two figures are echoed by the twin buildings behind them. In Qazale Amidi’s image in front of Iran’s Qazvin Central Mosque, the pair is divided by a subtle line behind them: the wet bricks of the mosque’s exterior wall. Some encounters are practical, two souls seemingly meeting by chance on the street. In others, strangeness abounds: Marco Cappelletti, from Venice, places his figures standing on a boat; Carmen Cardillo, from Catania, has the two face off in an intimate side street. From there, vague narratives unfurl.