The historian Marcello La Speranza and the photographer Lukas Arnold have ventured into another world, beyond the postcard clichés of Vienna. The two climbed into ruins, climbed up to the top floors of an abandoned department store and descended into many cellars and crypts, be it in the inner city or on the outskirts.
They call themselves “Urbexer”, a term that stands for “Urban Exploration” – meaning the discovery and photographic documentation of so-called lost places. “A growing city is always evolving and evolving; we cannot stop this process,” write La Speranza and Arnold in the foreword to their book ““, which has now been published by Elsengold Verlag in Berlin and records the condition of buildings with text and images, some of which have already been torn down by excavators or are still dozing.
The duo presents a total of 22 Lost Places in the Austrian capital. Different tothey broadened the scope: writings on crumbling house facades, burnt down and demolished houses and a cemetery were also included in their repertoire.
It’s just a pity that the print quality of the large-format work is partly miserable. Many images appear low in contrast and literally drown out due to the wrong choice of paper. The text blocks of the captions, which are highlighted in bright orange, also take some getting used to, as they dominate the layout and thus allow some shots to fade into the background.
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