Someone Save Soviet Architecture

An exhibition in Berlin is drawing attention to the neglected state of early Soviet architecture. These revolutionary buildings attempted a clean break with the past. The New York Times just published a write-up on the show:

“[I]nteriors were built for function, and most for public use.  They housed new state-owned department stores, administrative buildings and energy plants.  The cities’ growing population also demanded new concepts for communal living.  For example, the featured Narkomfin residential block, built in Moscow in 1930, included two floors of apartments, a communal kitchen, nursery, gymnasium and washroom.”

“Images of each project around the time of its completion are juxtaposed with photographs taken by the architectural photographer Richard Pare over the last 15 years, showing the once radical structures in their deteriorating present.”

Building the Revolution: Soviet Art and Architecture 1915-1935 will run through July 9th at the Martin-Gropius-Bau in Berlin.

 

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Author: Barry O'Keefe

Artist/printmaker from Richmond, Va

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