Meet Michael Pietrocarlo

I am drawn to the mystery of spaces where longevity has defied significance: forlorn constructs ravaged by nature, time, and the boundaries of ruin.

I discover and appropriate these “found places” in my photographs to expose the brutal beauty of their (inevitable) decay, exploring contrasting themes of transience/permanence, deterioration/renewal, and abandonment/reclamation.

Distressed Gothic

Beneath the patina of corrosion hides the wonder of a forgotten past. My hope is to reveal, and revere, remnants of former purpose and historical importance. Once these spaces were occupied by multitudes; now their images occupy only the imagination.

I prefer to capture scenes faithfully and undisturbed, favoring a wide perspective using natural light. Any image manipulation is done with obvious effect to communicate a particular visual statement. Large-scale prints convey vicarious presence within the distressed grandeur.

Above all, these acts of discovery and documentation help me confront my own struggles with mortality in an attempt to illustrate artistry in dereliction, hope in obsolescence, intimacy in emptiness.

Burner No. 2


Michael Pietrocarlo discovers and photographs forgotten placesacross Canada and the U.S., drawn by his interest in the history and transformation of urban centers. He began exploring and photographing 6 years ago as a creative outlet, which has since grown to become a prominent part of his life.

He has received an Award of Distinction from Artscape, and runner-up at the Toronto Urban Photography Festival in 2013 and 2014. His work has been shown in galleries throughout Toronto, including most recently in a group show at the Royal Ontario Museum.

Connect with Michael Pietrocarlo

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