The aim of James Friedman’s series Pleasures and Terrors of Kissing is not necessarily to show the bizarre affections shared between people and their animals, yet dogs are the subject of these kisses or make small, strange cameos in the photographs that feel either voyeuristic or like documents of performances. When the artist emailed me with a submission of his work, I found the snapshots of often curious kissing scenarios hilarious enough, but add dogs and the photos are taken to a whole different level. And it’s not just dogs watching people kissing; there are so many other things doing on! Dogs fighting in the background, running by, being scolded or trained, or trying to sneak a kiss themselves. For more great dog pictures, be sure to check out Friedman’s other projects, like Dogs Who’ve Licked Me.

From the artist’s statement: I do not remember any kissing between family members as I was growing up.  It wasn’t until my mother was hospitalized for eight months, unable to speak, that we began to kiss good-bye before I would depart for the day after visiting her. These newly discovered displays of affection were imbued with genuine caring and profound sadness as we both know she had only a short time to live. Our relationship in my mother’s final months inspired my photographic project, “Pleasures and Terrors of Kissing.”

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