Casinos Look Incredibly Eerie Without All the People

Illustration for article titled Casinos Look Incredibly Eerie Without All the People

Casinos can be rancid places, full of sadness and stale beer. But if you just vacuumed out all the gambling, they're surprisingly peaceful—if a little weird in the interior decoration department. Photographer Joe Johnson proves it in "The Playing Field," a project that documents Reno, its casinos, and almost zero humans.

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The images are simply surreal: reflections of reflections bordered by neon lights and glowing screens. If you do spot a human, it looks like they've been added to the scene by a painter with a sinister sense of humor. Still, these images aren't exactly funny. Like a stadium without a crowd, these spaces look lonely without humans—regardless of how many lights, mirrors, or fake palm trees you throw in. [Joe Johnson via It's Nice That]

Illustration for article titled Casinos Look Incredibly Eerie Without All the People
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Illustration for article titled Casinos Look Incredibly Eerie Without All the People
Illustration for article titled Casinos Look Incredibly Eerie Without All the People
Illustration for article titled Casinos Look Incredibly Eerie Without All the People
Illustration for article titled Casinos Look Incredibly Eerie Without All the People
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Illustration for article titled Casinos Look Incredibly Eerie Without All the People
Illustration for article titled Casinos Look Incredibly Eerie Without All the People
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Illustration for article titled Casinos Look Incredibly Eerie Without All the People
Illustration for article titled Casinos Look Incredibly Eerie Without All the People
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Illustration for article titled Casinos Look Incredibly Eerie Without All the People
Illustration for article titled Casinos Look Incredibly Eerie Without All the People
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Illustration for article titled Casinos Look Incredibly Eerie Without All the People
Illustration for article titled Casinos Look Incredibly Eerie Without All the People
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All photos by Joe Johnson


Check out more of Joe Johnson's photography on his website.

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DISCUSSION

The pictures are interesting and eerie sure enough, but they don't do the actual experience justice since there's no noise. When one of those places is devoid of humans, all those slot machines and the like still make noise, but it's all artificial, so it really messes with your mind. It's akin to walking into a video game arcade when no one else is there, all those machines playing their demos and sounds over and over and over and over while you have this mind crushing sense of being alone from the human presence perspective, but not alone due to the volume of sounds, lights, and machines all trying their damndest to draw your attention to them.