Culture Magazine

Homes by the Homeless (& the Power of Pictures)

By Bbenzon @bbenzon
Double Bed
When I first spotted the site in the above photo it was by accident. I was walking under the 14th Street viaduct and noticed some furniture and stacked boxes. 'That's odd,' I thought. 'I wonder how THAT got there.' I walked rapidly toward the site and before I knew it I was standing amid this furniture and these belongings. Someone obviously lived here and I was in their home, in the middle of the day, without their knowledge and without their permission. Part of me was embarrased and wanted to get out of there, pronto! but another part was fascinated and just had to take photos, eventhough I didn't have permission to do so. So I took the photos. It was a very strange situation to be in.
Living Space
Since that time I've come across other homes built by the homeless and have taken photos. Some, but not all, of those photos are in this Flickr set. Two days ago, Wednesday the 13th, I posted a link to that set on Facebook. People commented and shared and drove over 5000 "hits" to my Flickr site. Yesterday there were over 6000 hits. Right now, 5AM Friday morning, I've gotten over 700 hits, which is pretty high for this time of day. However, I expect things will cool down today. I doubt that the hit count will reach 5000, but we'll see.
The last time I got this kind of action at Flickr was when I posted a bunch of post-Sandy photos. That spike was a bit higher – over 7K, I believe. But I expected that traffic. This traffic I didn't expect.
First View

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