The Moscow Metro: From Public Transport to Social Icon

Even if you’ve seen pictures, you’re not prepared for the Moscow Metro System. For visitors, one of the great surprises of this historical city is discovering the beauty and cleanliness of its underground palaces. It’s worth a few hours in the afternoon or late evening (avoid rush hour 4-7) to ride around and see the […]

What was Russian Futurism? Seeking Societal Rebirth

Futurism, an artistic movement started in Italy, quickly found fertile ground in Russia starting in 1909. Futurism thus emerged in Russia in the period between the 1905 and 1917 revolutions when artistic, social, and political thought were in foment. Russia’s unique brand of Futurism helped form the basis of the Russian avant-garde, conveying its social […]

Dziga Vertov: The Revolutionary Eye of the Camera

Like many other great Soviet filmmakers of the Russian avant-garde, David Abelevich Kaufman – better known by his revolutionary pseudonym Dziga Vertov – came from a largely scientific background, having likely been first introduced to film as a tool in one of his science classes at university. Given this fact, it is perhaps understandable that […]

What was Suprematism? Seeking Transcendent Simplicity

Suprematism was an artistic and philosophical movement that drew inspiration from the philosophically non-objective, geometric, and technology-focused Futurism as well as the geometric, depth-focused Cubism. Most strikingly Suprematism opposed art for political or religious utility, and even art as a depiction of the objective world. For the Suprematists, art was produced for its own sake […]

Alisa Ganieva: Giving Dagestan a Voice through Modern Literature

“He regards himself as a Dagestani, but he doesn’t know what that means. This is a problem of many people in Russia, but especially in the Caucasus after seventy years of Soviet erosion of historical memory.” This is how Alisa Ganieva describes a character from her first full-length novel, The Mountain and the Wall. The […]

Tarkovsky: Films of Eternal Complexity

Russian film critic Maya Turovskaya writes in Tarkovsky: Cinema as Poetry that when she attended a special screening of Andrey Tarkovsky’s first film, Ivan’s Childhood, at a meeting of the Union of Cinematographers of the USSR, the prevailing opinion amongst the audience was that of awe mixed with confusion. This feeling of mystification, of seeing […]

Lubyanka: Inside the Story of Moscow’s Infamous Building and District

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. Lubyanka is the name commonly used to refer to the building […]

Elena Martilla: Artist of the Blockade

Elena Oskarovna Martilla came of age as an artist during WWII in Leningrad. She created haunting images of the suffering the residents of that blockaded city lived through as well as proud images of their perseverance. Today, she is 98 years old and still producing art. The Russian Museum, one of the St. Petersburg’s largest […]

Russian Protest Art that Isn’t Pussy Riot

When most think of Russian protest art today, they think immediately of Pussy Riot, the long-famous, all-female punk movement. These women have, since their “punk prayer” launched them to international notoriety, been heavily covered in the English-language press and heavily studied in English-language academia. However, Russian protest art is a diverse genre with a long […]

1 2 3 33