The photobook “Restraint and Desire” focuses on brief moments of connection and intimacy, the lifelong thematic interest of American photographers Eva Lipman and the late Ken Graves. From 1987 until Graves’ death in 2016, the couple photographed high school dances, sport events and official ceremonies, always observing the short, intimate moments of touch between their subjects that betrayed a complex world of unspoken bonds, desire and social rules. Their tender, sensitive images capture gestures, bodies and faces that express sexual tensions and an interplay between rituals and freedom, flirtation and fear, transgression and conformity.
“Even when the settings of Graves and Lipman’s pictures are familiar to us, we can never be sure of what is happening between the figures depicted therein. There is always a scintilla of mystery that ritual cannot publicize or sanitize: the unknown territories that intimacy carves out.”
― Becca Rothfeld in the New Yorker