Photographer Gesche Würfel has unearthed a treasure trove of decorated basements that lay hidden beneath the many apartment buildings in Northern Manhattan, New York City.
Würfel stumbled upon these basements, which are featured in her photo series ‘Basement Sanctuaries’, while looking for apartments with her husband in 2010.
According to Würfel, most of the basements that she encountered belonged to immigrants from Latin America and the Caribbean.
The furnishing used by these tenants seem to convert the lifeless basements into comfortable lounge spaces. Paintings of sceneries and landscapes, potted plants and artificial flowers, and fairy lights were some of the decorations found in these basements.
“The images encourage viewers to think in new ways about how space functions in New York City apartment buildings and broaden our understanding of the relationship among migration, semi-public/private space, and the everyday landscape,” wrote Würfel in her artist statement.
Scroll down to view her photos, which are also featured in her book that is available for purchase here.