Grand staircase in the Administration area of the Kirkbride building at Hudson River State Hospital during nautical twilight, with nearly-full-moon light shining in through the window. With civil twilight over before I could get this shot perfectly composed, I decided to guess on a 15 minute exposure for the final shot of the day, with the blue-hour light mixing with the moonlight - and this is what came out. This 1867 Frederick Clarke Withers building is mostly in horrible shape, but this particular section has held up rather well in the past 147 years.
I love how most asylums seem to have this grand staircase design incorporated in at least one building. Strangely, I found it in one of the smaller Kings Park buildings after someone removed the boards from the basement door. I went to the first landing, but didn’t go beyond there because the place looked extremely water damaged. The staircase is a hidden gem, but sadly won’t last very long at the given rate.
The Japanese acid-punk band Bo Ningen perform “Slider” for London-based filmmaker Marie Schuller’s hallucinatory film. The track is co-written by Roger Robinson and taken from their third album, ‘III’.
Often in my travels, I come across buildings that are becoming overtaken by nature. Vines crawl through broken windows in derelict asylums, reaching in to meet the moss that blankets the walls. On the top floor of a crumbling school in Harlem, a tree has been growing for decades. But nowhere is this theme more obvious than at Riverside Hospital on North Brother Island. Kudzu and other climbing vines have overwhelmed the former quarantine island that once played home to “Typhoid” Mary Mallon, creeping up the sides of buildings, cascading into top-floor rooms through holes in ceilings. Here, in what was once an open field in front of the now-collapsed chapel, the kudzu is so dense that one must move slowly so as not to get tangled up in it. In the distance, it is overwhelming the coal house and obscures any view of the power plant besides the looming smokestack. This is truly a place where nature is winning the battle.