In his series, Unborn Cities, American photographer Kai Caemmerer (b. 1988) explores the architectural structures and physical growth of new cities in inner-mainland China. Photographing newly-built residential buildings during the day and night, Caemmerer gives us a glimpse into what living in this area will be like. Since the buildings are empty and the streets vacant, his work evokes a sense of the uncanny – while we know these places will shortly be homely and are in this way familiar, because they are currently solely structures they may seem strange.
Caemmerer’s photographs revolve around the shifted sense of reality felt in a city that has yet to be inhabited by the people it was built for. Devoid of human beings and lacking the marks of history, these structures represent the origins of a future metropolis that will soon be home to millions. At present, however, they seem more like architectural models than places for living.