Abandoned – America’s Vanishing Landscape – A Review

Book Review: Abandoned

Title: Abandoned – America’s Vanishing Landscape
Author: Eric Holubow
Publisher: Schiffer Publishing
Publishing Date: Sept. 28th 2014
Rating: 5/5 Stars

“For a relatively young country, America is rich in decaying ruins that cover its landscape. Through his striking photography, Eric Holubow provides a glimpse inside these perilous structures to reveal the slow but unforgiving wear and tear that has befallen many of the country’s forgotten sites. What transpires is a surprising, yet undeniable beauty beneath the rubble and decrepitude. Centered in the Rust Belt, but spanning from coast to coast, north to south, and big cities to small towns, breathtaking images of nearly a hundred sites, including factories, churches, theaters, prisons, and power plants, signify the comprehensive erosion of important parts of our history. Holubow’s compelling work forces us to pay attention to formerly grand, significant landmarks and institutions that have long been ignored, and reminds us of the tragic fate that they and everything we know eventually share.”

A compelling look at the ruins that are scattered around a country, offering a glimpse of broken dreams, history, in a society that loves the largeness of design, but is willing to abandon it with a totality that is surprising. What struck me the most are the images that showed the sign of abruptness, such as the leaving behind of work boots in the ruins of a factory, or the school books still placed in perfect order on the shelves of an abandoned school. Inviting us to imagine the stories of these places, Holubow captures the rawness of these buildings in his striking images with an impressive clarity. If you are a fan of photography, check out this volume.