Over the past 6 years, the two Danish Urban Explorers Jan Elhøj and Morten Kirckhoff have visited more than 1,000 abandoned places in the world and documented their visits. These spectacular images of architecture entirely abandoned by people have formed the basis of three critically acclaimed books of photos from their travels all over the world.
Architecture is all about creating a setting for the lives and experiences of human beings. The architecture, public spaces and landscape, which surround us, make an impact on our lives, but there is also an inverse impact. It is the people who live and work in them who bring buildings to life, while public spaces and landscapes acquire their function by virtue of the people who make use of them. But what happens when the human component disappears, and architecture, public spaces or entire landscapes are abandoned?
As children, most of us have explored abandoned places, discovering overgrown gardens, empty houses, abandoned factories or deserted neighbourhoods. A small group of people, known as "Urban Explorers", have incorporated those childhood expeditions into their adult lives. Like explorers, they search for places, which are not usually accessible. Inspired by the maxim, "Take nothing but pictures. Leave nothing but footprints", they discover, document and chart forgotten, often empty and partly secret places.