An Ode to Shopping Malls


The French marble floors still gleamed under artificial light. It wasn’t quite a ruin, but it looked as if a viral outbreak had removed all life from the place.

“They had loud pop music echoing through the mall, and I’m looking down this corridor, and there’s no people, no stores open,” Mr. Bell said. “It was really a sobering moment.”

You can see his hushed reaction in the 10-minute video he filmed that day and posted to YouTube. Owings Mills turned out to be the pilot episode for what Mr. Bell, a 40-year-old filmmaker, has called the “Dead Mall Series” — a visual journey through the Mid-Atlantic States focused on the dying pleasure palaces of his youth.