Black Beasts: In captivity

This visual campaign was inspired by how the invention of the mugshot in 1888 used anthropometric methods to determine criminality from physical features. “In Captivity” also serves as a metaphor for how mass media depicts black suspects and in some cases, victims, as criminals before proven guilty. The suspect, in this manner, is a black beast as it’s in captivity by law enforcement. Inspired by historical documents written by white men on the construct of race, the physical features of the black beast is rooted in historical racist evidence and animalistic fantasy. Their teeth are physical fictions that their capturers use as a means of identification-- the display of their teeth in a mugshot reveals that the suspect is of the black beast species.


Creative Direction: Carly Heywood

Photography + Editing: Amanda King

Models: Ezra, Yonnie, Los, Jasmine

In Collaboration with Shooting Without Bullets