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Photo essay: Gerd Ludwig’s ’sleeping cars’

The documentary photographer lives in Los Angeles, and at night he searches for ‘sleeping cars’
There are more than seven million registered vehicles in Los Angeles County. Images of traffic jams are omnipresent. But where do all those cars go to rest? These photographs examine where LA cars are spending their nights.In middle-class neighborhoods people often have 1-2 car garages but rather use them for storage. So cars are left on the streets to park overnight, often getting covered during holidays, or when their owners are out of town. The series shows cars that have a presence. They command their space, they are mostly loners and shy away from being too close to others. Many sleep in covers, wearing them like nightgowns, though some sleep in the nude. Some take daytime naps, a few lucky ones sleep in pairs. (Gerd Ludwig/National Geographic)

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Documentary photographer Gerd Ludwig lives in Los Angeles, and at night he searches for “sleeping cars.” “My cars are loners,” writes Ludwig in the introduction to Sleeping Cars, a large-format photo book to be published in the spring. “I’ve spied on them in their nightgowns. I’ve watched some sleep in the nude; some take afternoon naps and a few lucky ones get to sleep together.”