Dimitar Karanikolov's profile


Architecture Photography


I like to photograph buildings, especially abandoned buildings, illegal buildings, crumbling buildings, reborn buildings, buildings with history...
Fact of the day: „Builders of the Bulgarian State" Complex in Shumen holds the world record for the „heaviest socialist monument“!

Monument to the Fallen Soldiers - Kosmaj, Serbia.

Pantheon „Mother Bulgaria“ - Gurgulyat.
A 20 meters high truncated square pyramid made of pink concrete. Built 1985

"Flame" monument - Panicharevo, Bulgaria
 Built in 1975. Designed by Alexander Barov.

The Casino in Constanta, Romania was built in 1910 and over the years has been used as a hospital, community centre and restaurant. Destroyed during the wars, rebuilt several times, neglected for decades, it is now being reconstructed. It is one of the most beautiful Art Nouveau buildings in the world.

The Kojak-Jaber building is one of the most famous examples of modernism in Beirut. It is nicknamed „le gruyère“ (the Swiss cheese) because its entire façade is perforated with round holes. Between the large holes, which are 3 metres in diameter, there are smaller elliptical holes that reveal the slabs. However, for any visitor who arrives at the building and looks up, the effect of perspective transforms the vertical ellipses into perfect circles and the large circular openings into horizontal ellipses. Magic!

Unfinished Expo Centre of 15 buildings in Tripoli, Lebanon designed by the legendary Brazilian architect Oscar Niemeyer. Construction began in 1963, but was frozen in 1975 by the civil war.

Abandoned socialist monument, overhanging a mountain ‚fjord‘ full of floating houses. Vucha reservoir, Bulgaria

No, this is not a port in South East Asia. Colourful, vibrant and constantly mutating - this is the self-regulated urbanism of the Fishing Village in Burgas. Bulgaria
A real Black Sea favela.

The Buzludzha monument is the crown jewel in Bulgaria‘s socialist modernism. When I first entered the monument‘s grand hall as a child in the 1980s, it was still functional and in all its glory. I had never been in a more spectacular space, and the only thing I could compare it to were the Star Wars scenes I had just seen. Exactly 30 years later, I walked into the building again, this time everything inside was falling apart and rain was pouring through the half-destroyed roof. It was like being in a movie again. Today, with the help of the Getty Foundation and numerous donors and volunteers, a reconstruction is underway.

„Arch of Freedom monument - Beklemeto  Pass, Bulgaria.
The territory of the former Eastern Bloc is dotted with thousands of monuments built between 1955 and 1991. A large number of them have been left to decay, and some have been deliberately destroyed as symbols of a bygone regime. On the other hand, many people and organisations are fighting for their preservation as part of our cultural heritage, trying to give them a new function and meaning in the modern context. It looks like the " For " or " Against " debate will continue for many years to come...

The Ponte City Tower is probably the most amazing and terrifying piece of dystopian architecture I‘ve ever seen. The 55-storey tower in Johannesburg is the tallest residential building in Africa and has been used as a location for films such as District 9, Chappie and Resident Evil. In the 1990s, many gangs moved into the building and it became extremely unsafe.  Ponte City became a symbol of crime and urban decay. The core filled with rubble fourteen storeys high when the owners moved out. There were even proposals to turn the building into a high-rise prison. Since 2007, the building has had a new owner and management, who have begun to rebuild it. 

A shot of Havana that somehow tells the whole story of Cuba.

An unfinished and abandoned hotel complex on the Black Sea coast - Tsarevo, Bulgaria

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