When I travel, I usually take only a few pictures of renowned monuments and buildings as there are already many great images that others have captured of these places before I. Unless I find something particularly different or interesting, I rather spend my time wandering around and taking in the ambiance. This was what happened when we visited the famous Antwerp Central Station in April.

I had taken a handful of photos and only started to review them recently. Two images stood out and I like how symmetric these have turned out. I cropped the images very slightly in Photoshop but the actions of the people who appeared in the middle of both photos were chance moments.Antwerp-Central-Station14a25bw

Antwerp Central Station08a25bwBuilt in the late 19th century, the architecture is impressive and rather eclectic: Louis Delacenserie designed the terminus buildings, which include an immense dome above the waiting room hall, which are primarily in Neo-Renaissance style with Art Nouveau accents. The Gothic-style iron and glass arched ceiling was designed by Clement van Bogaert. Local designer, Jan Van Asperen, drew the blueprint for the railway viaduct.

What I found equally fascinating was that the train station has three (!) levels of rail tracks. The tracks on the lower floors (-1 and -2) were constructed in more recent times for high-speed trains to travel through Antwerp Central when travelling between Amsterdam and Brussels, and also to accommodate the larger amount of traffic terminating at the station.

It was interesting to learn that the train station was almost demolished in the 1970s. Fortunately, this never happened and the decision was made to restore it  instead!

If you’re interested to learn more about the history, architecture and restoration of the Antwerp Train Station, visit this page.

4 replies on “Symmetry: Antwerp Central Station

  1. Those are beautiful photos, especially the moments you captured with the people! It’s amazing that in each of the shots, the gestures echo the architectural shapes: the raised hand mirroring the peak of the clock tower/gate, the two-person huddle making an arch like the ceiling. Wonderful!!

    And I feel the same way about photos of landmarks. Of course everyone needs a photo under the Tour Eiffel when they visit Paris, etc, but I think it makes more sense to express our own feelings about famous sights than to try to capture them the way countless photographers have already done!

    1. Quite interesting what you’ve pointed out! I didn’t notice the woman’s raised arm mirroring the hour hand on the clock – quelle chance! As for the couple who was huddled together, it didn’t occur to me that their combined form resembled the trainshed – I just thought it was a beautiful moment of quiet intimacy : )

      True true, a photo is rendered more meaningful when you are able to show your perspective of the moment or of the object. This also usually require that one takes the time to observe the surroundings, which is nice : )

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