a nice counterpiece to abandoned Russian buildings
June 22, 2005 11:07 AM   Subscribe

Buildings that never were: Unrealized Moscow - grand scale architectural projects from the mid 1930s to the early 1950s.
posted by iconomy (21 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Wow, that's an amazing find. If you leave out the enormous statues, some of them are actually pretty decent.
posted by swordfishtrombones at 11:20 AM on June 22, 2005

some of them are actually pretty decent

We sure have different tastes. To me, they're scary as hell (and would have fit right in to Hitler's Berlin); I think this one takes the cake. If I was hauled out of a car and realized I was about to be taken in there, I'd just throw myself under traffic and get it over with.

Great post!
posted by languagehat at 12:09 PM on June 22, 2005

A fantastic post, thanks very much for this.

I note that the People's Commissariat of ?eavy Industry looks scarily like any number of new apartment builds from the last 5 years in the decadent West.

I agree with languagehat about that pic, it remind me of the Ministry of Love or something.
posted by ClanvidHorse at 12:26 PM on June 22, 2005

This is good! Thanks, iconomy. I think this one at least has a certain charm—on paper, that admittedly may well not have been preserved had it been built.
posted by misteraitch at 12:30 PM on June 22, 2005

Thank you, that was cool.
posted by marxchivist at 12:44 PM on June 22, 2005

a certain charm—on paper, that admittedly may well not have been preserved had it been built.

Actually, it sort of was built—it's now the "White House" (parliament building) on the Krasnopresnenskaya Embankment—and it doesn't look bad.
posted by languagehat at 12:45 PM on June 22, 2005

This is what makes Metafilter great. Thank you.

I would really, really like to visit the city in those pictures if they were realized as they are drawn.
posted by dios at 12:46 PM on June 22, 2005

I too was reminded of Speer's plans for a New Berlin. This was very cool, thanks.
posted by stinkycheese at 1:04 PM on June 22, 2005

The design for the ?alace of Soviets building looks suspiciously like Oregon's state capitol building.
posted by pieisexactlythree at 1:30 PM on June 22, 2005

We sure have different tastes

I guess living in LA has ruined any sense of architecture left in me. Anyway, I thought this one wasn't that bad, especially for 1934.
posted by swordfishtrombones at 1:31 PM on June 22, 2005

Palace of the Soviets
posted by pieisexactlythree at 1:31 PM on June 22, 2005

The Soviet Architecture Purge

However vague some Western architects may be on the facts of this situation, the editors of Pravda are admirably candid. Of modern Western architecture they say: "It has arrived at a hopeless impasse of formalistic perversions and box-like, soulless building, behind which hide complete poverty of spirit and nihilism. . . . This architecture has clearly degenerated into the fashion of serving only the perverted, diseased tastes of banker, and coupon clippers." And lest the architects of the USSR harbor any doubts, the editors of Pravda unmistakably hold out their mailed fist: "We must . . . frankly disclose," they warn, "'serious perversions in the theory and practice of architecture, resolutely and swiftly root them out, and confidently advance our Soviet architecture on the road appointed by the Party and the Government!"

Great post!
posted by anastasiav at 1:38 PM on June 22, 2005

This one reminds me a bit much of a certain ape movie.

Thanks, I love this kind of architecture, even if it is fascist.
posted by smackfu at 2:10 PM on June 22, 2005

Thanks, iconomy. Great post.
posted by Galvatron at 2:16 PM on June 22, 2005

Thanks for that link, anastasiav.
posted by languagehat at 2:50 PM on June 22, 2005

No Tatlin?
posted by LionIndex at 3:14 PM on June 22, 2005

I think the Aeroflot building is really charming on paper because the color scheme is pretty sublime. And this is a great post.
posted by ScotchLynx at 3:18 PM on June 22, 2005

I've always been fascinated by outrageous construction projects like these. I wonder, would many of these have ended up as abandoned disasters like this?

(Apparently the Palace of Soviets was headed that way once construction began. They turned it into a public swimming pool.)

Great post, iconomy, thanks.
posted by sellout at 12:08 AM on June 23, 2005

They turned it into a public swimming pool

Which has now, unfortunately, been turned back into a cathedral -- an expensive pastiche of the original Cathedral of Christ the Savior. But of course rich people were able to get a lot richer off the contracts for the construction project; the pool was only good for people enjoying themselves.
posted by languagehat at 5:23 AM on June 23, 2005

They should make a swimming pool/Cathedral. Then you could swim at church.

Anyways, a great post
posted by Jimmypops at 12:32 PM on June 23, 2005

Thanks everyone. It was one of those great things you sometimes stumble across while googling for something completely different.
posted by iconomy at 3:06 PM on June 23, 2005

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