Tuesday, November 10, 2009

The Sad End of Evelyn McHale

I was doing some research the other day and came across this photo.

On first glance I thought it was some "edgy/crap" fashion-photo shoot but it's real."On May 1, 1947, Evelyn McHale leapt to her death from the observation deck of the Empire State Building. Photographer Robert Wiles took a photo of McHale a few minutes after her death."

The photo ran a couple of weeks later in Life magazine accompanied by the following caption:

On May Day, just after leaving her fiancé, 23-year-old Evelyn McHale wrote a note. 'He is much better off without me ... I wouldn't make a good wife for anybody,' ... Then she crossed it out. She went to the observation platform of the Empire State Building. Through the mist she gazed at the street, 86 floors below. Then she jumped. In her desperate determination she leaped clear of the setbacks and hit a United Nations limousine parked at the curb. Across the street photography student Robert Wiles heard an explosive crash. Just four minutes after Evelyn McHale's death Wiles got this picture of death's violence and its composure.

Jesus,this picture is the most beautiful/saddest thing i have ever seen.The position of her body,the twisted metal succumbed to scrap by her soft body.Her almost serene,dream like demeanor.Her gloved hand clutching her pearls.This photo is really powerful.Apparently its been appropriated by all sorts of bad artists including Andy Warhol.Below is a color version(by unknown)

1 comment:

  1. That's amazing in a really grim, sad kind of way. I've been around to see the result of someone jumping from a much smaller building... and it didn't look as peaceful as that.