Picture of the Day

posted by Bridget on 28 April 2012

Earlier this week I posed the question as to whether or not pictures should rely on words for their meaning.

In today's Guardian Weekend Magazine there is an intriguing set of images. On first look they appear to be product shots or advertising images of food. In fact they are reconstructed still lives which represent the last meals of prisoners on Death Row in the USA.

Taken by Helen Thompson this set of images poses a problem for me. I am usually critical of photography that must be matched to words so closely for us to understand them. But this photograph of a lone olive, sitting nakedly, without any embellishments becomes amazingly powerful on discovering that it is the last request of Victor Feguer, who was hanged in Iowa in 1963.

Click on the image to see more in the series.

last meal

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