Work in progress.
The Cote d’Azur is known for it’s holiday destination for both the jetstet and the family man. Not far away from the beaches and touristic cities, this landscape takes on a whole different look.
After the last coal and steel crises in 1957 and 1974 the heart of the German industrial region was left with a lot of bankrupt coal mining and steel forging sites. In the late 80’s, after leaving them to decay for a few decades a committee was formed to make sure these rusty relics were preserved and possibly reused to show us an age of economical and industrial growth which helped shape modern Germany.
The committee consisted of several different parties, each with a particular task such as water management, waste and redevelopment, new forms of housing and environmental renewal.
This led to the “Emscher Landschaftspark”, with the Emscher being the oldest flowing water were many of the first industrial sites were situated. This area is home to over 4 million people.
After visiting 5 cities (Dortmunt, Bergkamen, Gelsenkirchen, Bottrop and Duisburg) in 2012 I could see there were noticeable efforts made by the committee. All though the first steps in reshaping this vast area are made, still much need to be done to make up for the years and years of exploitation of the landscape.
The photographs in this project have been part of my graduation.
"Polder" covers the predestined boundaries of the man made island "Flevopolder". The transition form the drawing board to the actual landscape has been carefully planned for. This series examines the edges and finds a very different reality than once planned for.
The edge of the Antwerp harbour is defined by wastegrounds, former polders and expansion areas. Many of these areas are unused because of the unsure economical situation at the time. Yet whole villages are demolished to assure space for the ever expanding harbour.
The Leeds Liverpool canal is the longest canal in northern Britain and was build to assure transport to the west during the industrial revolution. On the banks the remainders of old industrial sites, apartmentblocks and villas make for a constantly changing new scenery.
Within his work Koen van Torenburg examines the urbanized landscape that surrounds us. Connections between industry, nature and city; and the transitory field they create, form his main interest.
He is interested by the way these landscapes develop and the different ways people use them subsequently. He examines the origin, function and context of different landscapes as they are prearranged by the designer.
Koen van Torenburg finished his BA in documentary photography at the fine arts academy of AKV Sint Joost, Breda in 2012. He lives and works in Roosendaal , the Netherlands.
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