84 pages, 47 photos in color
texts in english and in french
hardcover, published in 2013
When the Irish housing bubble burst in 2008, activity on building sites suddenly stopped. Until now, the Irish landscape is still covered by thousands of unoccupied houses. Valérie Anex turns her camera towards the walls, the hedges, the fences and the advertising signs of these vestiges of wealth. She pays close attention to the architecture and its direct links with land development policies. The composition and the repetition of the photographs, as well as the sequences of the images and their interaction with the text, make Ghost Estates a work that documents the process by which new houses become empty husks, left behind like debris.
Whilst in the past, ghost towns were abandoned ones, the ghost towns of today have never been inhabited. The photographs thus evoke the dynamic that leads from consumer fetishism to the collapse of an economic system. They may not make visible to the eye this new specter haunting the world, however, they hope to allow the reader to reflect on our livable spaces.
Published with the support of the City of
Geneva, the Republic and Canton of geneva
and the Loterie romande.