For the past ten years, one American artist, activist and photojournalist, by the moniker Seph Lawless, has been photographing abandoned areas. According to his website, Lawless hopes these images will inspire social awareness about the loss cities face due to economic decline. And while he has explored everything from dilapidated shopping malls to houses and factories, his latest series, picturing abandoned amusement parks around the United Stated and Germany, may be among the most haunting.
"Images of an abandoned amusement park once filled with laughter and joy, eerily sitting abandoned and forgotten, sends the viewer on an emotional roller coaster," he told A Plus in an email. "I believe strongly that art is the very best weapon to promote a sustainable change especially amongst today's youth. I don't look at it as social media. I look at it as a social movement."
In hopes of setting an even eerier tone to each image, Lawless said he photographed each park at sunset during violent thunderstorms. "It put me in some life-threatening positions out in Kansas and Oklahoma during tornado season," he told us. "One time in particular, [I was] literally outrunning tornados..."
Lawless' photographs and videos of forgotten areas and their remaining inhabitants is part of an ongoing project called "Autopsy of America."
Now, here's an exclusive look at his latest theme park project:
1. Land of Oz theme park in North Carolina.
2. Enchanted Forest Playland in Kentucky.
3. Geauga Lake Amusement Park in Ohio.
4. Six Flags Amusement Park in Louisiana.
5. Chippewa Lake Theme Park in Ohio.
6. Spreepark in Berlin.
7. Joyland Amusement Park in Kansas.
8. Fun Spot Amusement Park and Zoo in Indiana.
9. Lake Shawnee Amusement Park in West Virginia.
10. Dogpatch USA in Arkansas.
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