Author(s): Matthew Christopher
If the creation of a structure represents the values and ideals of a time, so too does its subsequent abandonment and eventual destruction. In "Abandoned America: Dismantling the Dream", internationally acclaimed photographer Matthew Christopher continues his tour of the quiet catastrophes dotting American cities, examining the losses and failures that led these ruins to become forsaken by communities that once celebrated them. From the heartbreaking story of a state school that would become home to one of the country's worst cases of fatal neglect and abuse to the shattered remains of what was once the largest mall in the United States, "Abandoned America: Dismantling the Dream" asks what leads us to leave places behind and what the consequences are of doing so. Matthew Christopher's journeys through these dangerous and hard to access sites force us to confront who we were, who we are, and who we wish to become.Exploring the remnants of two gorgeous theaters fighting for survival, the country's largest privately owned zoo, a a beachfront community left for dead when its bridge burned, a massive crumbling asylum, a derelict ocean liner larger than the Titanic, and more, this collection of photographs and essays will take you on a journey you won't soon forget.
"Matthew Christopher's photographic record of decay depicts the tragic truth: that something extraordinary has ended and that nothing like it may ever come back. We're now going in the other direction despite a lot of wishful thinking: toward a loss of complexity, a reduction in the scale of activity, a loss of artistry, and probably the end of many comforts, conveniences and amenities we've come to take for granted." - James Howard Kunstler, author of The Geography of Nowhere "His evocative commentary provides in-depth context on the demise of places that once helped to define a community's identity." - Liesl Bradner, The LA Times
- "His evocative commentary provides in-depth context on the demise of places that once helped to define a community s identity." - Liesl Bradner, The LA Times--Leisl Bradner"
For the last decade, photographer and writer Matthew Christopher embarked on a journey to document the ruins of American infrastructure, including asylums, industry, churches, schools, theaters, hospitals, prisons, resorts and hotels, as realized in his best-selling book, "Abandoned America: The Age of Consequences" and his critically acclaimed website Abandoned America. His work has gained international attention and has been featured in the L.A. Times, BBC, NBC Nightly News, ABC News, NPR, Philadelphia Inquirer, Washington Post, Yahoo News, Business Insider, The Telegraph, Daily Mail, Buzzfeed, the Weather Channel, the Huffington Post, New York Daily News, the Metro, Photo District News, Photographer's Forum, Juxtapoz, and many others. He has lectured on the art of ruins, abandoned spaces, and preservation, and displayed his photography at galleries and museums across the United States.