Artist Photographs Deceased People But Not In The Usual Way

The reconstruction of life.

Photographer Arne Svenson has taken portraits of many different subjects, from sock monkeys, to medical museum specimens, to voyeuristic shots of his neighbors. But his series "Unspeaking Likeness" feature some truly exclusive models.


Unspeaking Likeness is a photography series of forensic facial reconstruction sculptures.

Forensic sculptures recreate the faces of victims whose identities can not be defined due to obliterated facial features.

They are molded from unidentified skeletal remains and help police figure out who the person was.

The ultimate goal of a forensic artist is to capture that person's likeness using only pieces of their existence.

For his Unspeaking Likeness project, Svenson spent four years traveling around Mexico and the U.S.

He visited a number of coroner’s offices and law enforcement agencies to find "models" for his shoot.

All the forensic reconstruction sculptures are photographed in a classic portraiture style, giving them a sense of vitality.

"My point of focus was the eyes; I left the rest of the face to fall out of focus so as to better speak to the anonymity of the victim and the malleability of their existence," Svenson says.

With his eerie portraits Svenson aims to give second life to these non-existent human beings and challenge the viewer's to ponder their terrible fate.

To see more of Arne Svenson's photographic work, please visit his website.

(H/T: Juxtapoz)

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