On the afternoon he died, Arthur Cave paused and smiled for a selfie as he stood, appearing relaxed, in front of a windmill on the southern English coastline.
The 15-year-old, who was the son of Australian musician Nick Cave, sent the photograph to a school friend through messaging app Snapchat at 3.40pm on Tuesday.
It has now taken on a more haunting quality, as it is the last known image of the teenager alive.
Arthur Cave sent this photograph to a friend hours before his death, Photo: SNAPCHAT
About two hours later, Arthur was found lying critically injured at the base of an 18-metre cliff in Ovingdean Gap in Brighton, East Sussex.
He was flown to Royal Sussex County Hospital, but died that evening.
The cliff is just across the road from the windmill, which is visible in the background of the smiling photo Arthur had snapped.
Nick Cave and his wife Susie Bick, seen at an awards ceremony earlier this year.
The wire fence at the top of the cliff has now become a makeshift shrine where family and school friends, some of whom arrived on bicycles, left flowers and messages for Arthur on Wednesday.
Police do not yet know how Arthur died, but police sources have told British news outlets that Arthur, described by his father as a keen drummer, may have died following a tragic accident, and not a suicide.
Cave, 57, and Arthur’s mother Susie Bick issued a statement confirming the death of their son.
“He was our beautiful, happy loving boy. We ask that we be given the privacy our family needs to grieve at this difficult time,” the statement said.
Nick Cave with Earl (L) and Arthur, when they were seven years old.
Arthur’s parents and his twin brother, Earl, visited the cliff top on Wednesday afternoon and viewed tributes placed there, Brighton’s The Argus newspaper reported.
Earl left flowers and a heartbreaking note on the beach, The Daily Telegraph in London reported.
“Arthur – I love you so much,” the note read.
“You were a joy to be around and I will never forget you. You were the best brother I could ever ask for. Earl.”
It is understood that Arthur changed schools last year to the exclusive private school, Bede’s, near Brighton, where day fees are $29,660 a year.
Arthur’s friend, Ed Bucknall, said he had spent Tuesday morning with Arthur, hours before he died. Both boys had attended St Bede’s together.
Nick Cave with his son, Arthur, in the film 20,000 Days on Earth.
“He was a friend, my best friend,” Ed told The Argus.
“I saw him every day and I can’t believe what’s happened. I was with him in the morning, he was round mine.
“He was one of the nicest guys you could meet, he was so funny and just so much fun. He never said a bad word about anyone.
“He loved skating; we always used to skate together. And now we can’t.
“I’m devastated, I can’t even explain it – I’m just broken. I’ve been distraught ever since I heard. I was with his brother Earl when I heard and I went and saw their dad.
“I’m not sure what Arthur was doing at the time, I have no idea how he would have fallen.
“He was just such a nice guy, you couldn’t have asked for a nicer mate.”
The funny and quirky side of Arthur Cave is evident in his Facebook videos.
In one, titled Burning my latin book!!, he uses an accelerant to do the job. In another, Blowing up shit with Earl Cave, the boys dispose of a fluffy toy.
And, in yet another, a bucket of water is thrown on Arthur, who then leaps into a pond.
Arthur had starred as Borachio in the St Bede’s production of Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing last month.
A review of the production said the “dastardly” Borachio was “played with panache by Arthur Cave”.
At the school’s prize-giving ceremony, headmaster Dr Richard Maloney also mentioned Earl, who played Claudio, as being among the “stand-out performances”.