Urban Exploration

“Take nothing but photographs, leave nothing but footprints”

It’s been a while since I have posted an article so here I am.

I’ll talk about “Urban Exploration”. A photographic practice that I love.

It is unusual, but known by all photographers. Sometimes dangerous but really interesting. Interesting to walk in what was once a hospital, a castle, a school, a factory, asylum, sanatorium, laboratory, swimming pool, amusement park and so on … .

This photographic practice was born around 1995 and the term urban exploration was invented, or at least was popularized by Jeff Chapman aka Ninjalicious. He contributed to the integration of the Internet as one of the vectors of urbex.

Urban exploration, urbex for short, is an activity to visit places built by man, abandoned, generally denied access or at least hidden or difficult to access.

Belgium has a significant abandoned heritage. Belgium hosts many activists, the middle of the local exploration in recent years knows a real success. Several world-famous explorers come to Belgium .Following the decline of heavy industry, some regions such as Liège and the Charleroi are conducive to industrial discoveries. The main Belgian explorers approach the subject in several ways, some focusing on photography, others rather Heritage and see the latest exploration as a sport.

Unfortunately the boom of the 2000s brought an adverse effect for any part of the scene. Non- sensitized people engage in exploration and disseminate the location of preserved places on the internet. Disclosing the locality of the site has caused vandalism, fires and devastation. Belgian scene is mainly driven by Sylvain . Other names are valid in terms of respect for heritage is none other than Tchorski.

I love photography and adventure. Urban exploration is a photographic practice that allows me to travel in time and place. Time to discover and place to explore abandoned and mysterious places, walk into black corridors, find stories to be imaged and feel my heart beat at every noise.

!IMPORTANT! Physical risks associated with this activity are several types, falling through a rotten floor, falling rocks, structures collapse. The risks associated with water, drowning. Risks prescence of toxic gases. Risk of explosion and exposure to asbestos in some degraded sites is also taken into account.

Visit my personal BLOG where I talk about the different sites that I have already explored.


© Helena Toscano / Abandoned Powerstation / France


© Helena Toscano / Abandoned Racecourse / France


© Helena Toscano / Abandoned Powerstation / Italy


© Helena Toscano / Abandoned Castle / Belgium


© Helena Toscano / Abandoned School / Belgium


© Helena Toscano / Abandoned Bunker / Belgium


© Helena Toscano / Abandoned Farmhouse / Luxemburg


© Helena Toscano / Abandoned Manor / Belgium


© Helena Toscano / Abandoned House / Belgium


© Helena Toscano / Abandoned House / Belgium


© Helena Toscano / Abandoned Factory / Belgium


© Helena Toscano / Self-portret / Abandoned Factory / Belgium

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