Friday, July 31, 2009

UFO Ruins

In Taiwan near Taipei there is an abandoned vacation site called San Zhi constructed of modular houses. It is said that there happened some fatal accidents during its construction, so that the project was abandoned.

It’s not only me who is fascinated by these photos. They are very popular on web pages dedicated to ruins and strange places. So it may happen that the ghost city of San Zhi will be one of the first of modern ruins which will be converted in a real tourist attraction.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Life After People

Life After People is a television documentary film shown on History Channel in January 2008. The film shows how animal life and plant life will develop when humans have disappeared. Slogan: Welcome to Earth – Population: 0.

Sure that this is a nice idea. But the really interesting thing is to watch with what a lust civilization is abandoned to decay and destruction in this "documentary". It’s a real satisfaction to see how skyscrapers and famous buildings are coming down, to see how animals and plants reconquer their old space.

The animation is not the best, there are a lot of video games showing better destruction and nicer ruins. I think the real kick is especially provided by the experts and scientists speculating how it will happen. They give the whole "fantastic" thing a kind of realistic background.

The audience liked it a lot, and because of it’s great success there followed a 10-part television series in April 2009.

A 2 minutes promo, but the whole film can be seen in 9 parts on Youtube.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Lady Liberty Ruins in Pulp Magazines

When Hollywood started to use the ruins of Lady Liberty as an icon to illustrate the coming apocalypse these images were long popular in comics and pulp magazines. As an admirer of pulp illustration this is not a small satisfaction to me. Pulp does not always banalize popular trends and images it’s as well capable of establishing them.

Astounding (1941)

Fantastic Universe (1953)

Tales of the Unexpected (c.1957)

Amazing Stories (1964)

All these magazines were published long before the Planet of the Apes (1968).

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Faked Roman Ruin

In the rococo garden of the Schwetzingen Palace in Germany can be seen the roman ruin of a temple of Mercury.

But it was neither roman nor a temple, it was already constructed as a ruin (between 1784 and 1787). The classical taste of that time loved roman ruins decorating a bucolic landscape.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Photo Engravings

Fountains Abbey in North Yorkshire was founded in 1132 as a Cistercian monastery. Now it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

These photos are from the beginning of the 20th century and it’s easy to see how the photographer was imitating the older steel engravings of ruins. The aesthetic view had been formed by painting and engraving.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Post apocalyptic cities

There are a lot of pictures like these in the web, they are offered as desktop wallpapers. It’s a pity that normally nobody cares about explanations, if they are taken from games, movies or made by some artist.

Anyway I like them, and they provide a good idea of the latest mainstream of the interest in ruins.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Abandoned quarry in Menorca

The quarry was used for hundreds of years and closed in 1994. It’s really impressive to walk through the artificial canyons. It seems that the engines cut the stone like butter.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Prypiat, abandoned city

Prypiat is a city in northern Ukraine and was abandoned in 1986 following the Chernobyl disaster. The movie about this empty city gives a strong impression and reminds a lot of the prophetic movies by Andrei Arsenyevich Tarkovsky.