Budapest

Photo of semi-abandoned Budapest power plant earns global acclaim

The jury for the prestigious Architectural Photography Awards has just announced the shortlist of 20 pictures in contention for the top prize of 2018 – and among photos of remarkable buildings, ranging from a futuristic Chinese bank tower to Germany’s fairy-tale Neuschwanstein Castle, an image of Budapest’s semi-abandoned Kelenföld Power Plant has made the cut. Dutch photographer Roman Robroek captured the eye-catching Art Deco control room of this fanciful facility designed in the 1920s. Largely shut down in 2005, it recently served as a set in a blockbuster comedy.

Since 2012, the annual Architectural Photography Awards have honoured photographers from around the world who specialise in capturing amazing buildings, ranging from avant-garde skyscrapers to crumbling Soviet-era edifices. It was no surprise, therefore, to see a picture of south Buda’s Kelenföld Power Plant in the recently released 2018 shortlist. Dutch photographer Roman Robroek first captured this industrial Art Deco masterpiece some two years ago, when We Love Budapest posted a profile highlighting his locally shot work – so we are especially proud to see his Kelenföld imagery will be recognised at Amsterdam’s upcoming World Architecture Festival during November 28-30. This year’s Architectural Photography Awards winner will be announced at the event’s gala dinner.

Photo: Courtesy of Roman Robroek

Robroek is not the only artist who has recently recognised the visual potential of Kelenföld Power Plant, designed by Hungarian architects Kálmán Reichl and Virgil Borbíró. The same control room featured in the shortlisted photo served as the set for a climactic scene in the 2015 movie Spy, featuring Melissa McCarthy as an unlikely secret agent tracking a bad guy in Budapest. However, the amazing architecture of Kelenföld Power Plant extends beyond the control room – below we present a collection of Robroek’s other photos from the facility, courtesy of the artist.

Photo: Courtesy of Roman Robroek
Photo: Courtesy of Roman Robroek
Photo: Courtesy of Roman Robroek
Photo: Courtesy of Roman Robroek
Photo: Courtesy of Roman Robroek