Andrea AbrilAndrea Abril

White Elephants and Zombie Buildings

Spain, 1998. An act based on land privatisation was passed in order to boost the housing market. By 2004 about 180,000 holiday homes were built all over the Spanish coast. However, the pace of construction turned out to be unsustainable and when the financial crisis hit in 2008 the house of cards collapsed, leaving some 1.5 million ‘White Elephants’ and ‘Zombie Buildings’ unfinished, unsold or unwanted constructions scattered across Spain.

In the summer of 2014 I traveled to the East and South of Spain taking photos of these products of a deflating housing bubble. The ‘White Elephants’ and ‘Zombie Buildings’ are the root and consequence of the Spanish economic crisis. They symbolise not just the bankruptcy of construction companies but also the greed of those who wanted to get more rich and everything that this avarice brought along: speculation, corruption, poverty and unemployment.