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fall 2009

Exploring the ruins of New York City

In September 2009, the New York based online broadcast network VBS announced the newest productions for the French boots label Palladium. The videos are made in the style of travel movies about 'places both weird bizarre as well as unknown with a nod towards exploration,' explains VBS. They are about burning underground coal fires in West Virginia, abandoned subway tunnels in NYC, and missile silos long forgotten.

The Palladium boot, since 1947 in the same design created for the French Government to supply the legendary French Foreign Legion that was mostly stationed in North Africa (Algeria, Morocco, Atlas Mountains), plays not the 'starring' role in these movies.

"... We picked an explorer to find each location and to unearth the stories from these amazing places. Our explorations became the campaign. I think the team were most freaked out by the train tunnels underneath Harlem. Not only was it really dark, but there were also trains running through there. Every now and then you’d see a ladder going up into the ceiling and the faint glow of a television and you realize there are people living there." says Barney Waters, Palladium’s VP of Marketing in an interview on

Video: Palladium's Exploration Nr. 1 'The Ruins of New York City' by VBS produces series and publishes them with additional information on the website Creative director of is Academy Award-nominated director Spike Jonze (Adaptation, Being John Malkovich).

"In the middle of Manhattan we found an opening that leads to a tunnel. Dark shadows are spliced with beams of light from above. Every hour a train goes by, shattering your ears with an ominous honk. Old cassettes litter the floor and the walls chronicle New York City’s graffiti history..." On you will find the full text and all exploration movies.

Source: Original article with video on


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