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Theaters from the Past

For fifteen years, Yves Marchand and Romain Meffre travelled around the United States in search of abandoned theaters, “the great relics and temples of Hollywood’s golden age.”

The two photographers used a 4x5 camera to capture the atmosphere of theaters that speak of “a time when people prepared their outings to the movies just as though they were going to the opera.” Some of them have been transformed into gyms or supermarkets, others lay in a dilapidated state, plunged into a darkness that forced the photographers to light the space with torches, during a long exposure.

Proctor’s Theater, Troy, NY, 2012

Meserole Theater, Brooklyn, NY, 2016

Loew's Valencia Theater, Queens, NY, 2016

Balcony, Girard Theater, Philadelphia, PA, 2011

“During our visits to ruins, we always try to focus on remarkable buildings, whose architecture embodies the psychology of an age and a system. In it we observe the metamorphosis of the process of decay”, explain the photographers.

Eastown Theater, Detroit, MI, 2011curtain

Empire Theater, New York, 2016

Alhambra Theater, San Francisco, CA, 2013

Palace Theater, Gary, IN, 2009

The exhibition “Theaters - Epilogue” is on view at Polka gallery until September 10. The book “Movie Theaters” is published by Prestel Publishing and available at the price of 80 Euro.

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