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Photographer Captures Nature Reclaiming Australia's Abandoned Buildings

Brett Patman's photographs of power plants, hospitals, and slaughterhouses prove that nature always finds a way.
Brett Patman, Nature Always Finds A Way, from the Wangi Power Station in New South Wales. Image: Courtesy of the artist.

Mold creeps down from the ceiling of the decaying control room of the White Bay Power Station in New South Wales, yet a bright white light streams through the window. The scene is bleak and haunting for photographer Brett Patman, whose new project aims to capture historical abandoned buildings before they’re gone.

His Lost Collective project focuses on nature’s reclamation of abandoned spaces like old hospitals, power stations, gasworks, and slaughterhouses. Patman hones in on the ways nature grows through empty buildings via rainwater filling sinks, ivy pouring in through windows, or tiny saplings sprouting through the floor.


Patman started the project just three months ago and hopes to expand Lost Collective in his free time. The series comprises a number of abandoned sites in Sydney and New South Wales but he hopes to travel to extend those scenes globally. “The focus is mainly building upon what I have and finding more sites to document,” Patman tells The Creators Project. “I'm going to Japan for a couple of weeks in April and I'm in the process of planning locations to shoot while I'm there. So far there's an army base, a copper mine and a ryokan. I'd love to shoot Hashima but I don't think it's going to happen this trip.”

Scroll to see more of Patman’s work, and remember—resistance is futile, because in the end, nature always wins.

Control Room.jpg

The Control Room of the White Bay Power Station in New South Wales

Rehabilitation Rooms.jpg

Rehabilitation rooms of the abandoned Callan Park Hospital in New South Wales, which closed in 2008.

Dining Room.jpg

The dining room of the Callan Park Hospital.

Kill Floor.jpg

The Kill Floor of the Blayney Abbattoir in New South Wales.

Looking Down Retort Building.jpg

The Bathurst Gasworks in New South Wales.

To learn more about the photographer, click here.


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