A candy-colored blend of fact, fiction and photography: ‘I Fought the Law’

True or false: In Alaska, it is illegal for an intoxicated person to be in an establishment that serves alcohol.

It sounds paradoxical, but it’s actually true. In “I Fought the Law: Photographs by Olivia Locher of the Strangest Laws from Each of the 50 States” (Chronicle Books; $16.95), Locher illustrates puzzling, outdated and in some cases merely legendary laws from across America, a clever and often humorous look at legal history and “the letter of the law.”

“Some remain on the statute books, the majority of them were at one point removed, others never became laws … and a few of them are complete myths,” writes Locher, who “decided to withhold whether a law is fact or myth.”

Locher uses these quirky laws (or fabrications) as captions for her work. Like laws, photographs have traditionally been thought of as irrefutably truthful, but these are staged, highly stylized shots, which further complicates the boundary between fact and fiction.

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