Moscow Monumental

          Arriving from the battle of Borodino, Napoleon discovered Moscow, “the city of a thousand churches”, from the heights of what is now the University district. It is undoubtedly this last type of monumental construction, inherited from the Stalinist era, which is today one of the most striking faces of the Russian capital. The latter, by its architectural richness and diversity, cannot be reduced to this. But it is necessary to serialize the presentations of a considerable patrimony. Moscow Monumental, to refer to a stimulating book by Katherine Zubovitch, reminds us of a Promethean project, a sort of climax according to some or illustration of a Past of an Illusion, to take up the title of a book on communism by the great historian François Furet. 

This presentation leads through a few photographs along oversized boulevards, into the Soviet archaeology of a sort of Russian Easter Island where the megaliths of the former rulers have been lifted again in an upright position, the Khimki River Station, built in 1937 along a canal connecting the Moskova to the Volga, in the streets of Zamoskvoretche, where ancient facades, churches and neo-classical buildings built after the Moscow Fire of 1812 are combined, to the modern capital and the Kremlin, the eternal centre of power. 

(See Photographs on the French edition of this site)

 

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