Life in Iso: Kenopsia

BY NATALIE LIU

The following collection of photos was snapped on a quick walk to the shops during the peak of COVID-19 in Melbourne. Who knew that in 2020, a simple grocery run would be such a novelty? Having not been properly out of the house in a month, the prospect of seeing at least a few strangers out and about excited me more than I care to admit. Yet, I hardly saw anyone. Maybe 5 people at most. Spots like supermarkets or playgrounds are places of chatter and movement; to see them so empty, so still, struck a deep sense of loneliness within me. I considered writing about it, but couldn’t find the right words. After a bit of googling around, I came across a word that perfectly described what I’d felt:

Kenopsia (n.)
“The eerie, forlorn atmosphere of a place that is usually bustling with people but is now abandoned and quiet.”

But I figured the pictures were better storytellers anyway.

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