rusts

(“brownlands,” “echo factories”), Earths industrial (non-residential) ruins: more or less dissolved powerplants, warehouses, railways, fortifications; genuine rusts — dating, roughly, from the modernity era — indeed contain high concentrations of oxidized iron. Human-made yet uniquely alien — “aloof but strangely calming” — rusts are a world of their own, not blending with nature but just as foreign to the “ghostly and ghastly,” depressingly serial remains of the human dwellings of the era. “Rust art” boomed in time to get cleanup exemptions for many rustlands; frozen and museumed, they are cherished for unhurried fundamentality — melancholy grandeur: the vastness of the floors (“human scale be damned”), the deadweight of elephantine machinery, the final idleness of once-busy mechanisms — even the isolated hells of chemically poisoned spots.

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