Artist Jon Henry started working on his photography series Stranger Fruit back in 2014. What began as a protest against senseless police killings of black people ended up being a lot of other things, too. Most notably, it's an introspective mirror that allows viewers to examine their own take on the subject.

The people we see in the photos are real mothers, posing in their own environment with their actual sons, reenacting what it must feel like to lose them. The mothers are isolated. Alone. Empty. When the trials are over and the protesters have gone home, when the news cameras are gone and nobody is around anymore, the mother remains on the site forever. There's no peace of mind; the scene will always haunt her.

These mothers understand that this could happen to their family at any moment.

More info: jonhenryphotography.com | Instagram

#1

Untitled #44, Crenshaw Blvd, Ca

Untitled #44, Crenshaw Blvd, Ca

Jon Henry Report

Chloe Drury
Community Member
5 months ago

this is why we say black lives matter because people need reminding that POC are humans too.

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From a rural area in North Minneapolis to a street corner in Jersey City, Henry has visited a lot of places for the series. "I chose these locations because I could find subjects there," the photographer told Bored Panda. "The locations are where the families live and work. I'm looking for areas that describe the city and/or state from a geographical and architectural point of view."

#2

Stranger Fruit By Jon Henry

Stranger Fruit By Jon Henry

Jon Henry Report

Daria B
Community Member
5 months ago

While, I believe Michelangelo's Pietà played a big part in the overall inspiration for these series, this one is aesthetically similar too. And I like that. It surely does evoke many questions.

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Even though these shots are staged, they radiate authenticity. "The families choose whatever they are comfortable with wearing, so that helps the natural feel," Henry explained. "The comfort level with the family also helps the feel of the images. These aren't actors, they are family that [really] consider these issues."

#3

Untitled #35, North Minneapolis, Mn

Untitled #35, North Minneapolis, Mn

Jon Henry Report

Aragorn II Elessar
Community Member
5 months ago

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Yes, it’s snowed in Minneapolis

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The photographer wanted the mothers to pose deadpan to appeal more directly to the viewer. And they do. They look directly in our eyes, as if asking, how do we feel and what are we going to do about this. "The viewer can make their own decision on how to respond to the images," Henry concluded.

#4

Untitled #42, Central Los Angeles, Ca

Untitled #42, Central Los Angeles, Ca

Jon Henry Report

Shelli Aderman
Community Member
5 months ago

Oh, my heart! 💕😥

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#5

Untitled #5 Parkchester, NY

Untitled #5 Parkchester, NY

Jon Henry Report

Loki’s Lil Butter Knife
Community Member
5 months ago

This is heartbreaking...no mother should have to fear for child's life based on solely the colour of their skin.

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#6

Untitled #33, Jersey City, Nj

Untitled #33, Jersey City, Nj

Jon Henry Report

Ilse Steyn
Community Member
5 months ago

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Why always the boys that get in trouble

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#7

“Untitled 48, Inglewood, Ca”

“Untitled 48, Inglewood, Ca”

Jon Henry Report

Daria B
Community Member
5 months ago

The "target" in the background is very poignant.

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#8

Untitled #19 Magnificent Mile, Il

Untitled #19 Magnificent Mile, Il

Jon Henry Report

Katrina B.
Community Member
5 months ago

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Magnificent Mile isn't a city, it's a neighborhood in Chicago, the actual city.

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#9

Untitled #25 Montgomery, Al

Untitled #25 Montgomery, Al

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Della Racine
Community Member
5 months ago

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#10

Untitled #55 Little Rock, Ar

Untitled #55 Little Rock, Ar

Jon Henry Report

Jamma
Community Member
5 months ago

Poignant, considering the backdrop (a historically famous high school).

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#11

Untitled #17 South Side Chicago, Il

Untitled #17 South Side Chicago, Il

Jon Henry Report

Omar Pearson
Community Member
5 months ago

I'm just imagining the people who just don't care and it makes me SMAD!!

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#12

Jon Henry, “Untitled 39, Santa Monica, Ca”

Jon Henry, “Untitled 39, Santa Monica, Ca”

Jon Henry Report

Shelli Aderman
Community Member
5 months ago

So powerful!

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#13

Untitled 53, North Little Rock, Ar

Untitled 53, North Little Rock, Ar

Jon Henry Report

Carole Deem
Community Member
5 months ago

I have cried over every one of these pictures. people treasure and love each other.

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#14

Untitled 56, Houston Tx

Untitled 56, Houston Tx

Jon Henry Report

IrishGirl
Community Member
5 months ago

my heart is breaking...how can a family endure such a loss? yeah, I know - they weren't given a choice.

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#15

“Untitled 45, Oakland, Ca”

“Untitled 45, Oakland, Ca”

Jon Henry Report

Carole Dose
Community Member
5 months ago

Heartbreaking. I'm relieved that this is a demonstration.

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#16

Untitled #13 Groveland Park, Il

Untitled #13 Groveland Park, Il

Jon Henry Report

chillchillpill
Community Member
5 months ago

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This comment has been deleted.

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#17

Untitled 51, New Orleans, La

Untitled 51, New Orleans, La

Jon Henry Report

Carole Dose
Community Member
5 months ago

Mother and son--what a beautiful bond. Please stay safe.

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#18

Untitled #3 Harlem, NY

Untitled #3 Harlem, NY

Jon Henry Report

Shelli Aderman
Community Member
5 months ago

Central Park... 💕😥

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#19

Untitled #1 Co-Op City, NY

Untitled #1 Co-Op City, NY

Jon Henry Report

Blue
Community Member
5 months ago

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Massive housing projects like this breed crime and poverty. When will government realize this.

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#20

Untitled #29, North Miami, Fl

Untitled #29, North Miami, Fl

Jon Henry Report

Carole Dose
Community Member
5 months ago

Let's look forward to when we won't have to mourn.

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#21

Untitled #24 Birmingham, Al

Untitled #24 Birmingham, Al

Jon Henry Report

Carole Dose
Community Member
5 months ago

...and all for WHAT? Let us all LOVE each other!

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#22

Untitled 46, San Francisco, Ca

Untitled 46, San Francisco, Ca

Jon Henry Report

Carole Dose
Community Member
5 months ago

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...love lies dying...

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#23

Stranger Fruit By Jon Henry

Stranger Fruit By Jon Henry

Jon Henry Report

Jamma
Community Member
5 months ago

I see families that will have their hearts torn to pieces. :(

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#24

Untitled #21, Berwyn, Il

Untitled #21, Berwyn, Il

Jon Henry Report

Suki-Chan
Community Member
5 months ago (edited)

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oof

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See Also on Bored Panda
#25

Untitled 50, West Orange Nj

Untitled 50, West Orange Nj

Jon Henry Report

Carole Dose
Community Member
5 months ago

How do his loved ones endure the pain???

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#26

Untitled #31, Wynwood, Fl

Untitled #31, Wynwood, Fl

Jon Henry Report

Kay Cog
Community Member
5 months ago

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Yeap, that's what Black on Black crime will get you

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#27

Untitled #9 Newburgh, NY

Untitled #9 Newburgh, NY

Jon Henry Report

Levi
Community Member
5 months ago

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I don’t get any of these

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#28

Untitled #11 Buffalo, NY

Untitled #11 Buffalo, NY

Jon Henry Report

Carole Dose
Community Member
5 months ago

The pain is sooo overwhelming.

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