Abandoned: Before Pandemic

Essay 454 • Jul 6th 2020

Since Covid-19 swept the globe, our society has become a ghostly abandonment. Shops in plazas are empty and traveling has come to a stand still. Places like parks and airports remain vacant because of the virus. Yet some sites were forsaken long before any health scare.

Taking a trip down memory lane, I looked back at my time spent in what once was one of the busiest airports in Germany.
In the summer of 2018, I stumbled upon an empty airport in Berlin, Germany by chance. Tempelhof Airport closed down permanently in 2008 and remains a piece of history frozen in time. Faded lines of the runways’ tarmac mark a different era entirely. What once consisted of hundreds of thousands of people passing through the airport, now only houses intimate guided tours of nine or less people on select days of the week.

And though the exterior lawns are used as a public park, the interior still holds an air of isolation. Eventually, shops and train stations and companies will reopen their doors to society and things will slowly get back to normal. But for this airport, the rest of it’s days will be spent in seclusion.


Evelyn Freja is a freelance portrait and documentary photographer based in New York. After working in the magazine world for a few years, Evelyn quit her 9-5 job to pursue a career in the freelance photographic industry. Her work draws inspiration from her travels and the people and places she encounters along the way.
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