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1970’s MOTELS – THE HAUNTING AND BEAUTIFUL ESCAPE – MIKE MANDEL


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In the 1970’s Mike Mandel gave himself the task to roam the country and find motels no one cared for anymore and to make postcards out of their lonely souls. Photographing each motel with film, these photos have a clear haunting and glowing, lonesome appeal you just can’t shake. You can just imagine the kids of the early 60’s escaping to these motels for vacation and kicks but now these destinations have turned into places where people go to become ghosts. Mike describes his process for this project,  “We would often take the back roads, sometimes follow old Route 66, and we would find those sad, forsaken motels that had been sucked almost out of existence by the newer corporate chains situated just off an exit ramp on the newer highways. We bypassed Motel 6, Travelodge and Howard Johnson’s. After all, their postcards were usually just the same design with a different address. But we’d go out of our way to stop at every independent motel we could find in hopes of finding a postcard that would be even more banal than the one we had just found down the road.”

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See more of Mike’s vintage photographs here: www.flickr.com/photos/mikemandel/sets/


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