Saturday, May 7, 2011

Abandonment Issues: New York Pork Slaughterhouse (Under Destruction)

Axe and Smash

New York Pork



This little piggy went to market, this little piggy stayed home.
This little piggy went to New York Pork and got slaughtered.

I, on the other hoof, planned to survive my visit to New York Pork.

Fire ravaged the building on St. Clair Ave. in Toronto on November 6th, 2006 and it has since sat vacant. Many explorers have scoured and documented the building and it was finally time for me to see it for myself, to turn my lenses on it.

Much like our recent visit to the Land O' Lakes Motel, my jaw dropped, as that eager anticipation that precedes a fresh explore collapsed into a burst bubble, a shattered dream. For the second time in a month, I came upon a target location, a long abandoned building, and found an active demo site.

"Some people would throw up their hands in frustration..." Ninja said to me today... "but you aren't some people."

click here to add a title

bam bam rubble

A sole individual worker made up the demo crew at 9:01 am. For the first ten minutes, he was oblivious to my presence, as I turned my Canon Rebel XS on him and his destruction, whilst creeping deeper and deeper onto the site. Then a loud horn honked repeatedly and he shut down the excavator, climbed out and walked over to the food truck that had just pulled in to sell him breakfast. I weighed my options in that moment and settled on my preferred approach. I scurried off the property and then made a fresh entry onto the site directly in his line of sight. Knowing it'd take him a few minutes to eat and down a coffee that large, I simply asked if he minds if I wander around and shoot, followed by small talk and half truths. "Just be careful..." he said, smirking and pointing at the remaining rear of the building. "But don't go in, it's too dangerous, very unstable." He told me about the buildings history, I played along as the student, as if I didn't know, cause that fit best with one of my half truths. He told me about the fire in 2006 that forced the closure of the slaughterhouse. He also informed me that New York Pork has plans to rebuild in the very near future. I already had most of the shots I wanted of the rubble, but I walked up and snapped shots anyway, making it look good.

As soon as he turned his back, I made my move over the pile of rubble, climbed a mound of cinder blocks and hustled along the brick wall that precariously leaned over my head. I jogged along the back of the building and sure enough, there it was. The little piggy P.O.E.

By the time I had followed in the way of the pigs, more workers had arrived and the site was again active. Both excavators were now in the pit and ripping apart the remnants of the front portion of the building. Loud snaps and crunches made me jittery and high strung as I traversed and climbed the piggy paths and elevated walkways.

Needless to say, it was an intense and exciting experience to explore a slaughterhouse while a demo crew was ripping apart the rest of the plant out front.

2306 St. Clair Ave


counting stars

walk this way

rome wasn't built in a day, either was the world trade, but destruction is a coming of age.

sex smells

"You know what really grinds my gears..." - Peter Griffin

enter at your own risk

NY Pork


this little piggy went to slaughter

slaughterhouse 9

this little piggy went to New York Pork and got slaughtered

swine flew over the cuckoo's nest



"She's a fat pig" - Donald Trump


nice to meat you

don't walk this way

this walk way

Slaughterhouse IX

click here to check out all of jerm & ninja IX's ABANDONMENT ISSUES

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Abandonment Issues: Mr. & Mrs. Wickman

king kong bundy

The old wood stove hasn't brought warmth to this abode since Mr. Edward (Ed) Elmer Wickman passed away in July of 2004, at the age of 80. His wife Mrs. Margaret (Lois) Wickman had passed away back in January of 2001. Ed had a very large family that included 23 grandchildren, 18 great-grandchildren, and 4 great-great-grandchildren. Even with the large family though, the loss of his wife was heartbreaking. I can only barely begin to imagine how lonely those last three and a half years must have been.

adrienne adonis

randy macho man savage

On this day in April of 2011, the doors could barely hold themselves up on their aged hinges, and the yellow curtains on the windows were disintegrating. In the kitchen, my hands pushed aside a bright curtain and revealed the staircase to the second floor. Red and gold wallpaper adorned the staircase. A fuzzy green blanket with silk trim was hanging at the window high above a bright blue banister constructed of 2x4s. The banister gave way to striped wallpaper, peeling to old orange painted drywall crumbling to outer brick wall.

The Killer Bees
the killer bees

The Ultimate Warrior
the ultimate warrior

Paul Mr. Wonderful Orndorff
paul mr. wonderful orndorff

Bret The Hitman Hart
the hitman bret hart

Andre The Giant
andre the giant

Ric Flair
ric flair

George The Animal Steele
george the animal steele

Brutus The Barber Beefcake
brutus the barber beefcake

Mr. Perfect
mr. perfect

Honky Tonk Man
honky tonk man


Kicking the baseball between my feet on the second floor, photographing the baby blue Westinghouse Nail Dryer and Hair Dryer all-in-one with fat ass vacuum hose and colour matched case, I pondered how long it had been since some kids threw this ball around, and who those kids may have become? What became of the girls that used this baby blue Westinghouse equipment? These are the questions that push me forward as an explorer.

The Nasty Boys
the nasty boys

Greg The Hammer Valentine
greg the hammer valentine

The Fabulous Moolah
the fabulous moolah


The Model Rick Martel
the model rick martel

Time ravages. Time seems to go faster everyday with the ratio of tomorrows to yesterdays shrinking at a feverish pace. Much like is happening to us in these fading moments we try to to capture in photographs and memories, time eventually had its way with this old house in Hastings, Ontario.

Heaps of wallpaper have surrendered, given up on life and leaped to the ground, left piled in mass graves. Colour was the only thing still showing signs of life inside the house on this spring afternoon. The blue and yellow kitchen walls shining brighter than the cold distant sun, hiding behind a dark shield of clouds and dense precipitation in a foreboding black and grey sky. The curtains and the wallpaper, the pile of clothing and the bright blue banister, all alive with colour. Us, alive with passionate excitement and intrigue. The freshly wounded corpse of a wet dog that I couldn't seem to muster the strength to photograph, beside a rotting wood pile out back, remind us of just how short lived and precious this alive feeling really is. Nothing lasts.

Ev e ryt h in g f a ll s a pa ar t .

We too, will abandoned these shells, these skeletons, these houses...

The Fridge
william refrigerator perry

Macho Man Randy Savage
the rockers

Hacksaw Jim Duggan
hacksaw jim duggan

The Matador Tito Santana
the matador tito santana

The $Million $Dollar $Man Ted DiBiase

The British Bulldogs
the british bulldogs

Jake the Snake
jake the snake and damien

Hillbilly Jim
hillbilly jim

Ravishing Rick Rude
ravishing rick rude


One Man Gang
one man gang

Ricky the Dragon Steamboat
ricky the dragon steamboat

Legion of Doom
legion of doom

The time will come for each and every one of us. Until it does, live life to the fullest.

click here to check out all of jerm & ninja IX's ABANDONMENT ISSUES