The crown jewel of abandoned buildings in Philadelphia is, without a doubt, the Divine Lorraine. It also happened to be one of the very first that I ever explored, escorted by two artists, Lies and Get Up, back in February of 2012. The outside of the building was one I had seen many times throughout my life. I was born and raised in Philly (Fishtown, to be exact), and I went to high school on North Broad St, which the Divine anchors, towering ever so eloquently in its beautiful decay.
Still, nothing could prepare me for what was inside. The first few floors, a complete darkness. And a refuge, as many of these spaces are, for the city’s homeless. The higher levels were increasingly void of any semblance of a floor -- some near the top held together by only a handful of support beams, guaranteed to hold your weight and not much else.