Lost Empires: Nuno Perestrelo

Lost Empires is a documentary photography project intended to follow the tradition of creating a visual document of an era.  Inadvertadely, and over time it became photografic art.

Regardless of the Urban Exploration Art and the artistic value this exhibition, never shown in Portugal, is also a story of transformation and adaptation to new circumstances.

A solitary journey has been set to discover four of the biggest industrial icons of Portugal’s recent history, and nowadays transformed into archaeological areas falling apart piece by piece.


These have been companies who’ve affected the daily lives of nearly 30.000 people on its peak. Many of them migrated from the farming lands in the countryside and found a different life when coming to work in the new industries.
Lisnave (shipbuilding), Companhia União Fabril (chemistry), Mundet (cork manufacture), Siderurgia Nacional and its blast furnace (steel plant) became not only companies but small empires and deeply changed the dynamics of Portuguese economy as a whole.


They’re all located in the south of Lisbon, along the Tagus river, whose quick access to the capital’s harbour and to the Atlantic ocean was seen by these major industries, now photographed, as a strategic point to be located.

That was not a coincidence. It had been a strategic point since the 15th century, when the Portuguese sailors entered the caravels and embarked on this same river to start several journeys across all the oceans and continents of the planet that would completely change our perception of the world.