Moscow: Art for Architecture: Soviet Mosaics from 1935 to 1990

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Moscow, Gorky Park
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Moscow, Narkomfin Building
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St. Petersburg, New Holland Island
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  • Year: 2022
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: DOM Publishers
  • ISBN: 9783869220680
  • Page: 420
  • Cover: paperback
  • About the Book

Monumental mosaics were created throughout the USSR, but they played a special role in its capital. While in other Soviet cities and republics monumental mosaics became common in the 1960s, in Moscow mosaic was used for art-deco works and social realist ‘pictures’. The entire history of Soviet art is thus reflected in Moscow’s metro stations, palaces of culture, military museums, hospitals, schools, and prefabricated houses. Today, many of these works are disappearing before our eyes, victims of destruction or dismantling; the majority are not listed as under state protection, and a great number of their authors are unknown. This book collects 140 Soviet-era mosaics and arranges them in chronological order. It contains four main sections – Art Deco, Socialist Realism, Modernism, and Postmodernism – and includes a list of 295 mosaics that have been identified. This guide shows well-known works by Aleksander Deyneka, Pavel Korin, Boris Chernyshev, Evgeny Ablin, Yury Korolev, and Leonid Polishchuk side by side with mosaics by artists whose names were for a long time absent from the history of art and architecture. The idea for it came from American photographer James Hill, who spent three years seeking out and photographing works of Soviet monumental art that have not received the attention they deserve and that in the post-Soviet period have often been dismissed as propaganda.

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