On Intimacy: “I Think I Like You”
In 1985, Monica Moore published a now-famous study that covertly observed, analyzed, and catalogued nonverbal facial expressions & gestures exhibited by more than 200 random women—commonly labeled as “flirting behaviors.” While there had been studies that looked into female mating preferences, their selecting mechanisms and patterns remains undefined (Moore 238). Moore’s study were to document and describe this ensemble of visual & tactile displays of courting signals.
On the next installation of the ‘On Intimacy’ series, a small research photography project was done to visualize intimacy within a romantic setting. Based on a 1985 study published in the Journal of Ethology and Sociobiology, the project tries to reverse-engineer and capture the nonverbal courtship patterns catalogued in the paper, through modern photography.
While the cultural relevancy of these courtship patterns are indisputable—being the typical visual language of modern romantic films—it is important to contextualize that these cues occurs in real‑life settings only. In reality, the pervasiveness of digital dating and its multimodal property (Ramirez et al. 102) had driven (digital) natives to develop new norms & patterns of courtship as a response to the online dating discourse and internet milieus.
Drouin, Michelle, et al. “Why Do People Lie Online? ‘Because Everyone Lies on the Internet.’” Computers in Human Behavior, vol. 64, Nov. 2016, pp. 134–142., URL. Accessed 3 May 2021.
Ellison, Nicole, et al. “Managing Impressions Online: Self-Presentation Processes in the Online Dating Environment.” Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, vol. 11, no. 2, 2006, pp. 415–441., URL. Accessed 3 May 2021.
Finkel, Eli J., et al. “Online Dating: A Critical Analysis From the Perspective of Psychological Science.” Psychological Science in the Public Interest, vol. 13, no. 1, 2012, pp. 3–66., URL. Accessed 3 May 2021.
Manning, Jimmie. “Construction of Values in Online and Offline Dating Discourses: Comparing Presentational and Articulated Rhetorics of Relationship Seeking.” Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, vol. 19, no. 3, 2013, pp. 309–324., URL. Accessed 3 May 2021.
Moore, Monica M. “Nonverbal Courtship Patterns in Women.” Ethology and Sociobiology, vol. 6, no. 4, 30 July 1985, pp. 237–247., URL. Accessed 5 December 2021.
Ramirez, Artemio, et al. “When Online Dating Partners Meet Offline: The Effect of Modality Switching on Relational Communication Between Online Daters.” Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, vol. 20, no. 1, 2014, pp. 99–114., URL. Accessed 3 May 2021.
Code Authorship Attribution
The source code of the above’s comparison slider feature is based on Image Comparison Slider by Mario Duarte (2021).