Martin Schoeller Death Row Exonerees
Death Row ExonereesAug 28, 2020 - Jan 10, 2021
This exhibition consists of ten moving, digital portraits of individuals who share their stories of how they were convicted and sentenced to death row for crimes they did not commit. Schoeller collaborated with Witness To Innocence, a non-profit led by exonerated death row survivors who work to abolish the death penalty in the United States.
About Martin Schoeller
Martin Schoeller (German, b. 1968) is a world-renowned contemporary, portrait photographer. He is known for his extreme, close-up portraits of celebrities and public figures including Barack Obama, Angelina Jolie, Oprah, Jay-Z, and Willie Nelson. Schoeller is also known for his work in commercial photography–including the iconic portrait of Colin Kaepernick for Nike’s campaign commemorating the 30th anniversary of “Just Do It.” The stylistic consistency of his work creates a democratic platform for comparison between his subjects, challenging a viewer’s existing notions of celebrity, value and honesty.
“I wanted to present viewers with a harrowing, interactive account of the stories of innocent people forced to endure government-sanctioned horror in nightmare conditions. These women and men bear dignified witness to the unacceptable costs of a misguided system of laws in desperate need of revision and a prison system that focuses on punishment, rather than on rehabilitation.”
– Martin Schoeller
The Fight for Freedom – A conversation with Photographer Martin Schoeller and Witness to Innocence Exonerees
Watch The Fight for Freedom—a conversation with Martin Schoeller and Witness to Innocence exonerees Kirk Bloodsworth, Executive Director of Witness to Innocence, and Sabrina Butler-Smith as they discuss the exhibition and share the exonerees’ stories of how they were sentenced to death row for crimes they did not commit.
Photo Credit: Kathy Ryan