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Posted Mar 24, 2010 in Arts, Cool Shit, Decor | 0 Comments

The Crazies

Mental institutions have been a part of American culture ever since the pilgrims locked each other up in primitive nuthouses. Or at least as long as the Jack Nicholson/Nurse Ratched feud of One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. And, hey! Guess what’s making a comebaaaack?

That’s right. Christopher Payne, famed architect/photographer/archeologist, is making loonybins cool again. Why else would his photos be on Trendland?! Payne’s photos, taken during the research process for his acclaimed book, “Asylum: Inside the Closed World of State Mental Hospitals,” reflect several years of investigation into the self-contained communities of mental institutions. His collection captures long-abandoned rooms filled with sixties psych ward decor and nothing more. It’s how Girl, Interrupted would look if those bag-o-bones Ryder and Jolie turned 90 degrees clockwise. Also, with a lot less Whoopi involved.

Anyway, Payne’s collection allows us to peer into the strange and often dark histories of America’s homes for the befuddled, offering a glimpse at committed life. And life, it seems, is batshit crazy. But check out all the free amenities! Bowling alleys, beauty salons, clawfoot bathtubs, free lobotomies to wash your cares away. As anyone venturing into the market for a cheap Montreal apartment will tell you, crazies got it made!

The downside: crippling isolation, Shutter Island atmosphere, operation in rural areas, far from the hustle and bustle of sane urban life. Plus, look at these places! They’d make anyone go insane. Just imagine trying to keep your wits about you surrounded by caged windows. Or that gossamer. Or how about rows upon rows of meticulously stacked Chef Boyardee? You’d be crazy as hell to stay sane!

For more crazy shit, scroll down.

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