An off-kilter look into the practice of infiltrating abandoned places, buildings and spaces. A world of dodging security, alarms and rotten floors. Where guerrilla historians risk asbestos, junkies and arrest to learn more about our forgotten past. This is Urban Exploring.
In outback Wittenoom, life is becoming increasingly insular. The government claims this ex-asbestos mining town is polluted, attempting to shut the town down by bulldozing buildings and cutting off power. Now nature is taking over. Yet eight determined residents of the once boom-town remain.
Directed by Caro Macdonald
Sound Recording by Elizabeth Hoyle
Stills Photography by Tobias Titz
“Work stops at sunset. Darkness falls over the building site. The sky is filled with stars."
― Italo Calvino, Invisible Cities
The American Can Factory, Read Street, Portland, Maine. A piece of Portland history is in the process of demolition. This collaboration by Portland-based artists Caroline Losneck (audio) and Christoph Gelfand (video) depicts the building in March of 2013 just prior to demolition. Snow was still melting away off the rooftop and the asbestos removal team had just begun their tedious process.
At this stage, several materials are being taken from the vessels, either to ease diver navigation or to prevent pollution. So every asbestos and oils are being removed. Some safety passages for divers are being cut and some walls removed. All materials are being conducted to recycling and the harmful ones to proper destiny.
The images this clip relates are from the corvette Oliveira e Carmo. More will follow, so stay tuned...