Cities and the People Who Inhabit Them

“Milan”; photo by Claudio Dell’Osa; location: Milan, Italy

Photo Contest 2019 submissions inspire with dazzling interplay of light, materials and a human component.

Escalators that provide access to Leifeng Pagoda, a structure built in 975 and rebuilt in 2002 in Hangzhou, China, are flanked by stone steps interspersed with planters holding bright red and yellow flowers and cradled in the lush greenery of Zhejiang Province in eastern China. Visitors to the attraction mill about the base of the steps, and escalators carrying them to and from the top are full. Philippines-based photographer Emman Foronda captured the scene and entered it in ELEVATOR WORLD’s Seventh Annual Photo Contest. “Escalator at Leifeng Pagoda” is one of many entries — 176 from 17 countries — that did not place in the contest but deserve recognition, nonetheless.

Notable entries came from all corners of the world. Those featured here show scenes from New Delhi; great North American cities such as Chicago, NYC and Vancouver, Canada; Italy; Greece; Malaysia; and Sydney, Australia.

Some of this year’s entries are striking for their human element. Two by Moline, Illinois-based photographer Brian Murphy bring the Chicago skyline to life with foregrounds populated by people passing the time on benches at Millennium Park and at a music festival at Grant Park. On the opposite end of the spectrum, a woman and her dog share a quiet moment in an elevator in “Cheryl and Wilson” by Lancaster, Pennsylvania- based photographer Scot Gordon.

Other images capture the rich materials and artistic details of the installations themselves. “Travel. . .

Naturally With Doppler,” submitted by Thessaloniki, Greece-based Doppler SA, showcases the rich brownish- purple and beige marble-encased elevator cab in a hotel. The unit is warm and inviting with a natural wood and mirrored interior. It is flanked by a panel of bright-green foliage that provides a delightful contrast to the dark marble. Another entry, “Dispatch,” by Vancouver-based Chloe Elizabeth Photography, also shows an elevator lobby that features bright- green leaves against a rich, dark wall. The lobby is outfitted with beautifully marbled white bricks, wood and steel accents, and a barely noticeable destination-dispatch system.

Flora features prominently in other entries, as well, such as “Dee Cee Designer Villa Lift” in New Delhi by Dinesh Choudhary. In this image, bright red roses and maple leaves atop a gray marble pillar stand next to the narrow steel and dark wooden entrance to a residential elevator. “Integrated Elevator” by Mark Johnston brings the outside in at a panoramic home elevator in Sydney. Inside the cab on the ground floor, passengers are surrounded by banana trees, sago palms, succulents and monkey grass on the patio. “Balmoral Black” and “Charcoal,” also by Johnston, provide an inside look at the sleek, artsy interiors of Sydney homes with elevators as the rooms’ centerpieces. Johnathan Kazmierczak captured a similar scene on the other side of the world in Grand Junction, Colorado, in “Glass New England Style.”

Escalators and light figure big in a pair of entries from disparate locations: “Convention Centre Escalators” in Vancouver by Chloe Elizabeth Photography and “Side of Escalator in Nu Sentral (shopping center)” by Asnawi Bin Johari. In the latter image, units are encased in an enclosure of slatted panels that creates dancing shadows on the floor, ceiling, walls and the units themselves.

Skylines, both serene and buzzing, were captured by Brayan Casas in “Memorable Morning” overlooking Manhattan and “Milan” by Claudio Dell’Osa showing traffic whizzing through the Italian city at night, respectively.

Details old and new inspired photographers. “Captivation” by Susan Pettit provides a kaleidoscopic view in gold and white of an elevator ceiling at the Smith Center in Las Vegas, while “First Impressions” by Justin Jow gives the gold, mahogany and white accents of an elevator interior in a newly renovated hotel a spin that brings to mind the art of Piet Mondrian. Sometimes, the images speak for themselves, such as “Houser Sweet Houser” by Queens, New York-based Matthew Reichin. This piece highlights the wistful beauty of the vintage machine with its peeling green paint and rust.

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Elevator World | October 2019 Cover