Urban exploration, or Urbex, is a thing.
This is clearly not an ordinary, everyday man-made structure left to ruin after the business closes or the house forecloses. This particular home was opulent and fully occupied upon abandonment - we know this because even the doctor's tools and equipment were left behind.
Scott Darby is a master of urbex photography. An urban explorer, photographer and adventurer, he documents the unsettling beauty and mystery of urbex.
Below, Dr. Anna's house in Germany. She and her husband ran a small, private urology clinic. Darby was told that the husband died in an automobile accident some time ago, and that Dr. Anna was in a long-term care home when he visited the abandoned residence in 2014.
Darby has photographed abandoned palaces and mansions, as well - such as Palace Casino, in Italy, below.
Visiting his website, you'll also find photos of abandoned small residences and cottages like the one below, which he calls the Little Green House.
Darby also has documentation of once-grand cathedrals, chapels, monasteries and churches (interiors and exteriors) on his website, such as the one below, in Leeds.
For every location and site he visits, Darby attempts to find out the story and researches the history. Sometimes there is a wealth of information and other times there is virtually none. Visit his amazing and rich website at Darbians Photography to see more of his work. You can follow him on Twitter, or on Facebook.
The lure of places of abandonment has to do, I think, with the mystery and secrets that they impart. What happened here? Who were the builders? Who inhabited this space - and why are they gone? Not everyone feels a tug of wonder, or a melancholy pull to places that are left to ruin. But those of us who do are prone to a kind of awe that is at once fascinating and fearsome.
Until I put my brave-girl-boots on, I'm happy to participate in urban exploration virtually through the lens of Scott Darby. He's leaving a wonderful trail of documentation, a wealth of views, and his continual curiosity feeds my soul. Here are to the untold stories, the adventure and mystery, found in what is left behind in abandonment.