A serene landscape in the Montana badlands, Fort Peck Lake and its dam were made famous as the initial cover of Life Magazine. Entirely man-made, the lake is vast and solitary, a by-product of FDR’s new deal. The lake shows no trace of human presence, just sky, water and a strip of rocky soil. The lake has a web cam which Wiesenfeld uses to record its’ constant changes of light and weather within a composition that remains fixed.
The portraits are another fixed composition: youth on death row appear with adult composure as they take on the camera for a final photo. A direct corollary to the lake, these individuals are in state of constant introspective flux as their surroundings remain static. The inmates are like the lake and their emotions the weather: in captivity minor changes can be dramatic. Systems of law and order forever alter the land as well as the lives of the inmates; what started as a passing interest (in the inmates) seemed to have an increasingly direct relationship to a lost a forlorn landscape.