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ho_hai_tran_pizza_hunt_1The Great Wall, Glendale Heights, IL, USA

ho_hai_tran_pizza_hunt_13Copycat, California, PA, USA

Ho Hai Tran and his partner Chloe Cahill have traveled over 14,000 kilometers between Australia, New Zealand, and the USA on a very special road trip of sorts, dedicated not to the landscape of these majestic lands nor in an ode to Robert Frank (refreshing!) but to finding and documenting all of the original Pizza Hut restaurants that were built in the 1970s, 80s, and 90s. The photographing duo has captured around 100 huts; most of the original Pizza Huts have been repurposed or refurbished and are barely recognizable now, reincarnated as Chinese fast-food restaurants, grocery stores, pawnshops, and funeral homes. The duo has set up a Kickstarter to finish their project and turn it into a book.

Tran writes: “As a child growing up in New Zealand during the ’90s, the local Pizza Hut was a place of wonder. A world of red checked tablecloths, pizza by the slice and an endless supply of soft serve. When I was eight, the ‘Book It’ program offered me a clear path to all of the pizza, garlic bread, and jelly cubes my heart desired.” He continues, The Pizza Hut “is a celebration of the golden era of dine-in fast food. For anyone who’s ever made a mountain of mini marshmallows on their self-serve sundae, maxed out on free refills at the drink fountain or driven past a hut and felt its strange allure – this book’s for you.”

This project was inspired by the buildings themselves, says Tran. “Both the strong visual features that these buildings have and their ability to evoke certain memories from my childhood were enough to drive us to investigate further. Now that the buildings are operating as different business, it is fascinating to see what businesses have breathed new life into the buildings, how they are reinterpreted as a new brand and what lengths they go to either disguise or embrace the past.”

Tran believes it’s “important to photograph these huts now before they vanish. It’s a snapshot of what they have become which enables us to reflect on shifts in tastes and the end of the golden era of dine-in fast food.”

ho_hai_tran_pizza_hunt_10Seoul Hoikwan Restaurant, Belfield, NSW, Australia

ho_hai_tran_pizza_hunt_4House of Joy, Glendale CA, USA

ho_hai_tran_pizza_hunt_9Demolished – North Geelong VIC 3215, Australia

ho_hai_tran_pizza_hunt_3Vacant, West Palm Beach, FL, USA

ho_hai_tran_pizza_hunt_6Church of Our Savior, Boynton Beach, FL, USA

ho_hai_tran_pizza_hunt_8Los Burritos Mexicanos, St Charles, IL, USA

ho_hai_tran_pizza_hunt_5Simply Stereo, Hoffman Estates, IL, USA

ho_hai_tran_pizza_hunt_2IGA, Frankston, VIC Australia

ho_hai_tran_pizza_hunt_7Davinci Homes, Murrysville, PA, USA

ho_hai_tran_pizza_hunt_11Olsens Funerals, Revesby, NSW, Australia

All image © Hoi Han Tran

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