Lost in Ordos: Drifting through the Ghost City

© kevin Metallier

A bunch of European rippers go in search of an empty skateboarding kingdom in Inner Mongolia.

The Chinese city of Ordos; built to house over a million people, but currently home to just a few thousand, contains all the essential ingredients of an amazing giant virtual street park except that here in the ghost city, everything is ‘real’.

Thaynan Costa, Frontside 50-50
Thaynan Costa, Frontside 50-50© Kevin Metallier

Korahn Gayle, Daniel Pannemann, Thaynan Costa, Alex Mizurov, Antony Lopez and Bastien Duverdier arrived in Inner Mongolia late last year, just before the cold returned across the south of the Gobi desert. They found a surreal, and at times disorienting place.

Daniel Pannemann, Kickflip
Daniel Pannemann, Kickflip© Kevin Metallier

Created in a matter of months, brand-new empty buildings line the winding, deserted streets of Ordos City. Across hundreds of square kilometres, futuristically-designed museums compete with monuments dedicated to the glory of ancient Mongol warriors for the attention of no-one in particular .

Antony Lopez, Switch Crooks
Antony Lopez, Switch Crooks© Kevin Metallier

In the heart of this half-lit urban mirage, we wayfared in search of skateboarding adventures. This is our experience of the city, frozen in time within these images.

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Korahn Gayle, Crooked Grind
Korahn Gayle, Crooked Grind© Kevin Metallier
Alex Mizurov, Switch Flip
Alex Mizurov, Switch Flip© kevin Metallier