The fully overgrown floor of a derelict foundry, shot in monochrome.

The interior of a long-abandoned foundry located in Kernan, IL. Apart from the two boards shown, there were no other recent signs of human visitors.

This building stands in plain sight and was a central fixture of its small rural community, but is treated as if invisible. The outside facade is mostly intact, and the parts that aren’t walled off by young trees and undergrowth see cars drive by without pause or slowing. I wondered if passers by didn’t realize that they looked upon a shell, that breathtaking transformation was taking place a few steps inward.

I had to turn back not long after this photo. Delving further into the ruin would’ve been foolish, and I was poorly prepared for navigating the undergrowth, rusted implements, and unstable footing that were found while simply trying to enter. I would love to climb the upper level, dive through each gaping door, and find all that was out of reach, but am content with the little I saw. The foundry was no longer a place for people, and I had no good reason to impose upon that.

Mamiya RB 67 Pro-S
Mamiya 50mm f/4.5 C
Kodak TMAX – ISO 100 – 6×7