For her ongoing project Last Words, leading Conceptual poet and lawyer Vanessa Place (born 1968) has recorded in her own voice the last statements of all of the inmates executed in Texas as recorded by the state since 1982. This volume comprises a transcription of an 80-minute excerpt of the project; Place’s project will continue, as the executions are slated to continue indefinitely. Inmates who refused to speak are represented by five seconds of silence. In Last Words, the sentence of death is performed through the final sentences of the condemned.
Vanessa Place (born 1968 in Stratford, lives and works between Los Angeles and New York) is an American writer and performer. First poet to be invited to the Whitney Biennial, she notably performed at PS1, New York and Whitechapel Gallery, London. Vanessa Place is also a critic and criminal defense attorney.