Author: kweaver

Lubyanka and the GULAG: a walking tour of Moscow’s history

There is always history surrounding us. In a city like Moscow, this can seem overwhelmingly apparent. Moscow has many imposing buildings from many eras – some are immediately recognizable and others only invite wonder as to what stories lay behind their beauty or grime. The stories of Moscow’s Lubyanka District were recently opened for me […]

The Jewish Museum and Tolerance Center

The Jewish Museum and Tolerance Center presents a history of Russia through the eyes of its Jewish population, highlighting Jewish contributions to Russian history and emphasizing how Jews have suffered through the same tragedies as the rest of Russia (with special attention to events and policies that particularly impact Russia’s Jewish population). The center effectively […]

Museum of Soviet Arcade Games

The Museum of Soviet Arcade Games (Музей советских игровых автоматов) is a private museum founded by friends Alexander Stakhanov, Alexander Vugman and Maxim Pinigin in 2007. Initially open only by reservation on Wednesdays, the museum has since expanded to two branches in Moscow and St. Petersburg, and boasts over 50 machines in each location. At […]

VDNKh – The Moscow Mockup and Smart City

VDNKh (ВДНХ) is a permanent general purpose trade show and amusement/leisure park in Moscow. The park first opened in 1939 with ten pavilions, and has since expanded to over 200 buildings. A friend and I saw two exhibits during our time at VDNKh: the Moscow Mockup (Макет Москвы) and Smart City (Умный город), both new […]

State Historical Museum of Russia

The State Historical Museum, located in the center of Moscow between Red and Manege Squares, was founded in 1872. It features exhibits concerning the Russian territory from the prehistoric ages until the end of the Romanov dynasty. I took a guided English-language tour of this museum through Bridge to Moscow. Although I paid 150 rubles […]

GULAG History Museum

Excursion included in SRAS cultural program for Moscow for Fall, 2017. The GULAG Museum, established in 2001 by writer, historian, and former gulag prisoner A.V. Antonov-Ovseenko, is the only state museum devoted to Stalin’s repressions and the GULAG system. We took a guided tour of this small but informative museum as part of our SRAS […]

Bunker-42

Excursion included in SRAS cultural program for Moscow Fall, 2017. Bunker-42 was intended to be an underground fortification designed to protect the USSR’s top-ranking military and government officials (including Joseph Stalin) from nuclear warfare. It remained completely secret from citizens and foreign intelligence until 1995, when it was purchased by a private company and opened […]

Zinaida Serebriakova: A Painter of the People and Country

“Happiness on canvas” is a phrase that well describes the early works of Zinaida Serebriakova. Best known for her vibrant, joyful style, it’s only natural that the her largest exhibit of the last 30 years, timed at the 50th anniversary of the artist’s death and the 100th anniversary of the October Revolution, coincided with spring […]

Lysenko, Savitsky, and Preserving the Soviet Avant-Garde

Forty years ago, near the dusty shores of the retreating Aral Sea, Communist Party officials visited the Museum of Igor Savitsky. Savitsky, affectionately called “Junkman” by his friends and associates, was an artist. Under the nose of State officials (and sometimes with their funds), he amassed a collection of over eighty thousand banned Russian avant-garde […]