In my photography I have always been fascinated by the mix of the mundane and the extraordinary. While I was reading about efforts to stop the Last Meal 'tradition' in Texas it sparked my interest. In the most unnatural moment there is (state sponsored death) there is this surreal moment where the condemned inmate is offered their choice of a final meal.

In New Zealand (where I’m from), and in fact nearly anywhere else in the developed world, the Death Penalty is just not even in the conversation. It is a remnant of an earlier era. This little bit of civility, "hey we are going to kill you but what would you like to eat?" just jumped off the page.
As I read about the requests that were made I felt a sense of empathy for these people. Up until now they had generally been depicted by the state and through the media as bad people meeting their deserved end. Whereas now through this common denominator of food they became more than just a statistic and were strangely personalized. It made me curious about the entire justice system and how certain people are deemed bad enough to not walk the earth anymore and if this system is prone to any biases or mistakes.

I decided to visually represent this moment the prisoner sits down to have their final meal.

Copyright ︎ 2019 — Brooklyn, NYC