Saturday, March 01, 2008


I was browsing the Internet, as I very often do, when I came across a site dedicated to documenting abandoned buildings (mostly psychiatric hospitals and asylums [asylae?]) through photographs and text. The site is called Opacity and it's honestly beautiful.

I think we are that used to seeing buildings whole, being in them and having them fade into the background, that seeing abandoned ones is almost like seeing a corpse. Something that was once living, if only vicariously, is dead. The very words we use to describe them - abandoned, derelict - tell us that the building has lost something and wants our love, like an abandoned puppy. The eerie atmosphere of a derelict building, of something being not quite as we expect is something that you never forget; it's not for nothing that many horror films are set in them.

What intrigue me almost more than the photographs, however, are the comments made on them. There are some who are simply idiots (following the Greater Internet Dickwad Theory), but there are also mental healthcare professionals who comment on why things are the way they are in those photos. Given my own interest in the profession, it's good to hear these people giving some insight on what it's really like. (As opposed to, for example, spidergirl's comments. After you read a couple, it sounds like she's looking for evidence of abuse where there is none, and actually seems quite excited to get it. See, for example, this comment from this photo.)

1 comment:

Syrrys said...

Neat site.
funny trolls.