Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Tatars and Soviet Architecture

"the building of the Kazansky Station, built in Moscow from Shchusev's design. Started in 1913, its construction was completed in the Soviet period, essentially by 1926. Combining the building's volumes, a delicate exercise resulting in a certain surfeit of contrasts, the effect is very much akin to that in Art Nouveau structures, although it was intended to imitate a group of buildings dating from different periods, a feature of old Russian architecture. This intention is borne out by the nature of the decor - prototypes dating from different periods were used for the structure's different components. The station's main tower is an accurate (accurate?) reproduction of the tiered tower of the Kazan Kremlin, intended, as it were to symbolize the final destination of a journey from this station. "

"the suprematist techniques of arranging the components of the building are, perhaps, even more in evidence in the composition of the Press House, which combines publishing and printing houses in the city of Kazan, built between 1933 and 1937 by the architect Semyon Pan (1897-1970). The symmetry of the overall arrangement is perhaps the only traditional feature of the building. The emphasized plasticity of its several heavy volumes, which adds dramatism to the composition, was characteristic of that period."

"Large circus buildings...were also multifunctional. There is a special expressiveness in the volume of the circus in the city of Kazan, a reinforced concrete lens hoisted onto a flattened, broadly glassed podium: built in 1967, it is the work of the architect Gennady Pichuyev, and the engineers I. Berim, and B. Rudny. The image here is created precisely by the expressiveness of the volume's form."

from "Russian Architecture of the Soviet Period. Ikkonikov 1988

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