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The Psychology of Ruin Porn

Why we can't take our eyes off images of old buildings and decrepit interiors
relates to The Psychology of Ruin Porn
Courtesy: Matthew Christopher

It's the sort of image, imbued with loss and layers, that architecture buffs drool over. A wheelchair sits center stage, its orange vinyl back echoed by a round tabletop that leans against a wall, painted in a familiar shade of institutional green. A mattress, flattened and grimy, lies tossed onto a floor that's littered with fallen plaster. In the foreground, an overturned metal trashcan speaks volumes. A mirror reflects the whole sad scene.

It's romantic, it's nostalgic, it's wistful, it's provocative. It's about time, nature, mortality, disinvestment.