ALMARCEGUI~Lara. Ruïnes in Nederland XIX – XXI (sold)
Author: Vinken en van kampen & Lara Almarcegui
Publisher: Episode Publishers, Rotterdam
Lara Almarcegui, Ruïns in the Netherlands XIX-XXI
graphic design: Floor Koomen language: Dutch/English, 154 black & white illustrations, paperback, 208 pp, 12 x 18 cm
In this guide, a building is considered to have become a ruin when its windows or doors are no longer intact or when walls or roofs have holes. When this happens, the building is exposed to the weather, to wind and rain or to wildlife and vegetation. The building is no longer protected from exterior elements, nature invades setting off a process of the merging of building and nature. A building in ruins also displays the materials it was built from, its construction method, so that it reminds of what it must have been like when it was being built, when the place was still a building site. The buildings that appear in this guide Ruins in the Netherlands XIX-XXI hardly resemble the idealized ruins. Most of them are at an earlier stage, for example, an abandoned building in which the process of decay has only just started. Others have reached a later stage than the ideal ruin and have become little more than a pile of rubble.
These ruins and abandoned buildings have no use, no function. This means that they are open to all kinds of possibilities. In a country like the Netherlands, in which every inch of land seems to be used with the utmost efficiency, the existence of these blank spaces is something to be grateful for. But it is important to remember that although some of these ruins will remain standing for some time, others will be renovated and many of them will be demolished before long. It is important to visit them as soon as possible.
Guide to ruined Buildings in the Netherlands XIX-XXI Century
Lara Almarcegui searched the Dutch grounds, looking for the ruins of buildings. Sometimes only their windows were missing and the downfall had just started, sometimes she found nothing more than a pile of rubble. Lara Almarcegui’s work often explores neglected or overlooked sites, where the planned and unplanned use of the urban space becomes visible. Revealing their identity in her guides, highlighting each location’s tendency towards entropy.
When is a building a ruin? For Almarcegui it all starts when the building is exposed to the great outdoors, due to broken windows or wholes in the roof. No longer protected from exterior elements it now becomes a prey for the elements of nature: wind, water, sun, vegetation and wildlife find their way into every creek and slowly merge into the buildings structure.
Guide to ruined Buildings in the Netherlands XIX-XXI Century contains over 150 entries, presenting a fascinating overview of ruins and abandoned buildings: a never accomplished museum, a luxurious hotel, a series of open-air swimming pools and bridges and a lighthouse.