Since we originally published this story on May 15, artists Rhys Ernst and Zackary Drucker have expanded on their photographic project, Relationship
, which chronicled the pair's romantic relationship as Ernst transitioned from female to male and Drucker transitioned from male to female. Whereas Relationship
was a "celebratory and sentimental
" look at the opposite-oriented trans* couple's shared life, the new photos in Post / Relationship / X
reflect Ernst and Drucker's romantic separation: The two remain creative partners, but are no longer lovers. Click through to see 10 photographs from Relationship
, followed by 19 from Post / Relationship / X
Related: Powerful Photos Show Two Trans* Teens Growing Up
Rhys Ernst and Zackary Drucker didn't intend to turn their lives into a public photography exhibition. They began documenting their relationship through photographs in 2008, and over the next five and a half years, they amassed hundreds of images. The snapshots — taken by them and for them — chronicle Ernst and Drucker's time spent together as lovers and partners. Encouraged by a curator at the Whitney Museum of American Art, Ernst and Drucker selected the 46 photographs featured in Relationship
, now on view at the Whitney Biennial
. Raw and arrestingly intimate, Relationship
chronicles Ernst and Drucker’s private moments as an opposite-oriented transgender couple — over the time period in which the photos were taken, Ernst was transitioning from female to male, while Drucker was transitioning from male to female.
Related: This Trans* Model Will Inspire You To Rethink Gender
The series presents tender scenes of the pair along with signals of their transitions: a shot of Drucker’s developing chest; the pair standing side-by-side with bandages on their behinds from their latest hormone shots; and other everyday moments from their lives. On a recent Saturday afternoon, I spoke with the artists about their work, their relationship, and their takes on what it means to be trans* today.
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