Projecto Abandonado

photo: abandoned pharmaceutical company

While moving my ass through Portugal, I soon discovered that the country has an enormous amount of abandoned buildings. From rural shacks to desolated former hotels and psychiatric wards with the tools of the trade still in place. Or empty factories, like in Amadora, just a few minutes away from where I lived at that moment in time.

Together with Marta Pereira, I went there twice to photograph the bowels of the beast. Trying to get the feeling across that I had while shooting and editing towards the final results. Technically challenging meditations. Having Amadora’s oldest tasqua very nearby was a very nice add-on to the exploration. Old people playing cards loudly, affordable food and wine.

Two photos from the set were amongst the winners for a contest themed “Abandono” hosted by A Secreta Vida das Imagens / Restart.

Much of the company´s administration was still lying around when we visited the place and from reading some of the papers, the factory got shut down by law in several phases that started in the nineties. Personnel files told us that for many people Biofranco must have become part of their identity, considering the amount of years they had employment there. Talking to the people in the area however, revealed nothing about the factory, or why and how it was shut down. It was almost as if nobody wanted to talk about it. Strange, because people usually like to talk about the past.

To assure you; while we walked around, there were no ghosts. A lazy cat, that´s all.