Thursday, May 8, 2008


Anyone who has spent any time with me probably knows I have a fairly strong liking for abandoned buildings. NW and I had several "forts" in various abandoned houses throughout childhood. (In fact, our girlish decorations were still in the attic space in the abandoned barn down the road when I peeked in a few years ago). Abandonment can make any dwelling look like it has a story to tell, probably some tragic tale at that.

In any case, this love of no-longer-lived-in-spaces has never left me.
I am not alone in this however, and the internet is host to some marvelous examples. These gems were plucked from the truly great site, on which you can find some of the most stunning examples of broken soviet scenes:

Villages all across Russia were abandoned after the fall of the soviet infrastructure, when the state could no longer support its industries:

There is no place so abandoned, however, as Chernobyl:

(photos by Alexandr Vikulov,


  1. I like abandoned buildings because they're so peaceful: they're visually chaotic and representative of the end of the world but are at the same time some of the most relaxing environments I can think of.

    I was in Estonia and Latvia last year, and about a quarter of the old Soviet institutional buildings have been abandoned. I toured on old water processing plant that was covered with crumbling murals on the walls.

    And now, in Albuquerque, the city is cracking down on cheap motels (as havens of meth labs), and as a result Route 66/Central is COVERED with empty motels, with a perfunctory chainlink fence between you and them. It's fucking awesome.

  2. I am also a big lover of abandoned and falling-apart buildings... it started when I was a kid. I remember riding my bike out into the coutry with a friend to poke around rotting, overgrown houses. When I started driving, there were lots of ghost towns to explore in Kansas. I first went to New Mexico with my mom on a road trip when I was 11 and I remember we found an abandoned town... we didn't realize it was abandoned at first and tried to go to the dead diner for lunch. There were still TVs and couches in the living rooms of the houses, mason jars in the pantries--some of them full of weird-colored old food and others exploded. There were sunflowers some 8 feet tall in the lawns. On later trips between Kansas and NM I've looked for the town but never found it again...

  3. my friends and i used to explore abandoned buildings all the time in NJ. most of them were old medical equipment warehouses that we would break into. if it seemed like nobody was checking up on them regularly, we would start to build skate stuff in them, until we had little skateparks to keep us occupied through the winter.

    the "mill" building at the bottom of circular street in SS was abandoned until about 10 years ago, completely run-down, unsafe structurally, with squatters living in it. we used to go in there all the time in college. we'd communicate with the squatters by writing notes on the walls and they'd write back, sometimes in prose. we never saw them but their sleeping bags, artwork, garbage and more disgusting evidence was everywhere.