Sunday, 9 June 2013

grimed with beauty

Dresden-based young photographer Matthias Haker
is a media computer science student who discovered
photography in 2008 soon building up a wide-ranging
portfolio of images including people and weddings,
landscapes and architectures yet he proved to have an
 eye for emphasizing the magical charm of abandoned
buildings in his 'Decay' project that fully conveys 
the exclusive beauty he sees in them.

There's a house on my block
that's abandoned and cold
Folks moved out of it 

a long time ago
and they took all their things
and they never came back
Looks like it's haunted
with the windows all cracked
and everyone call it
the house, the house where
nobody lives...

He traveled throughout Germany and Europe in search
of foresaken beauty looking for these urban and rural
treasures in decay: abandoned manor houses and
country mansions, barracks and depots of former
German Democratic Republic's army, ditched salons
and ballrooms, clinics and insane asylums; Matthias
came to shoot more than 200 discarded buildings
that Mother Nature began to reclaim for herself.

Once it held laughter
Once it held dreams
Did they throw it away
Did they know what it means
Did someone's heart break
or did someone do somebody wrong?

His jaw-dropping pictures demonstrate how even the
most decrepit of buildings can communicate an aura
of magnificence despite chaos and havoc through a
sublime work on lights and contrasts (and HDR imaging,
I presume)
. Wisely, Matthias doesn't give any information
about the location of the cast aside beauties he came
to visit in order to avoid vandalism by ill-mannered
intruders: ”I do act very respectful inside those places,
but there are too many idiots out there that don't behave
like me. I've seen so much vandalism, theft and other
bad things happening to those buildings after they
have become popular, that I will do all I can to 
protect those beauties” he writes.

Well the paint was all cracked
It was peeled off of the wood
Papers were stacked on the porch
where I stood
and the weeds had grown up
just as high as the door
There were birds in the chimney
and an old chest of drawers
Looks like no one will ever
come back to the
House were nobody lives...

excerpt from 'House where nobody lives' lyrics
© by Tom Waits from 'Mule Variations' album

Gorgeous relics of a bygone society where time stands
still; beautiful winding staircases and broad lodgings
where the paint had chipped off the ceilings, walls are
stained with mold and rusted debris are scattered all
over the place, yet they all retain their enigmatic 
charm. Forsaken places where, as in one of 
Matthias' titles, the glory remains.

> all images © by Matthias Haker via deviantART <


  1. Dearest Mikapoka,
    Unbelievable that such architectural beauties lie there in the claw of Mother Nature; abandoned and lonely...
    Great photography!
    Hugs to you,

  2. Beautiful and fascinating pictures!!! I almost can imagine SO MANY THINGS about the history of each place...As you said above, this places held laugh, cries, projects, discussions, meetings, etc, life that went away. I think they are very suggestive to make different stories for a writer... Thank you so much to share them!!! Bye!