May 8, 2019

Laments: Death came and he looked like...

Laments: Death came and he looked like...


Part of a set. See all set records

Jenny Holzer

(American, b.1950)

L.E.D. sign, marble

325.1 x 24.1 x 13.3 cm (128 x 9 1/2 x 5 1/4 in.); 45.7 x 61 x 137.2 cm (18 x 24 x 54 in.)

Purchased with funds donated by Scott Mueller 2019.19


Did you know?

The same text is displayed in motion on the LED sign and static on the surface of the sarcophagus.


Laments: Death came and he looked like… belongs to one of Jenny Holzer’s iconic sculpture series, the Laments. A response to the AIDS epidemic, the series is based on 13 texts written by Holzer, which she has described as “voices of the dead.” Each text was manifested in two forms: as colored light flowing between the ceiling and floor on LED signs, and as engravings carved into the tops of sarcophagi made of different stones. This work is one of those pairings.

See also

Contact us

The information about this object, including provenance, may not be currently accurate. If you notice a mistake or have additional information about this object, please email

To request more information about this object, study images, or bibliography, contact the Ingalls Library Reference Desk.

All images and data available through Open Access can be downloaded for free. For images not available through Open Access, a detail image, or any image with a color bar, request a digital file from Image Services.