#DeadToysSociety with @alef79: a Memorial to Childhood Days Past

For more photos and videos from Athens’s streets, browse the #deadtoyssociety hashtag on Instagram and follow @alef79.

Look closely along the streets of Athens, Greece, and you might find a forgotten world of past childhoods. For Alexis Efstathopoulos (@alef79), teddy bears, cars, bicycles, dolls and miniature soldiers—weather-worn by vigorous playtime and then left to brace the elements—have all become the subjects of a forlorn but playful series of abandoned toys on Instagram.

"I accidentally came across a small plastic horse toy, which I captured with my phone," Alexis explains. "What I mostly liked in the photo was the forms in it; the horse, the pavement lines, a fence. The following days I randomly encountered other toys on the street and this became more and more intense as the days went by. Obviously the toys have always been there, on the streets of Athens, I just never had the eyes to see them."

Alexis started using the hashtag #deadtoyssociety to document and capture the abandoned toys and soon fellow Instagrammers began to contribute from across the world.

"To me this entire process acts as a memorial service in honor of the discarded toys," muses Alexis. "This project has to do not only with toys, but also with childhood, nostalgia, past, memories and reuse."