London’s Design Museum moved home last year and set up its stall in wonderful, newly refurbished premises in Kensington. I wrote about my visit to their opening events here.
I was intrigued when I received the invitation to their latest exhibition, called Imagine Moscow, an exhibition which explores six Moscow architectural landmarks from the 1920s and 1930s that were never built! However, it turned out to be interesting, surprising and offered some visionary designs which would have resulted in a modern, dramatic city had they come to fruition. From large-scale projects to classic propaganda material, there is plenty to see and enjoy.
This greets you as you arrive, the start of the red theme and bold imaging that you will see throughout:
The most impressive design was the Palace of the Soviets, well displayed by a floor to ceiling drawing. Boris Iofan’s winning entry in a competition for this Palace is monumental in scale, it has a 416-metre high central tower topped with a 100m high statue of Lenin and houses 6000 rooms. Construction was started, in 1937, but was halted by the German invasion of 1941 and the steel frames were used for fortification and bridges.
The propaganda material is striking with bold figures and colours and a clear message around the strength of the workers and the power of the revolution.
One section really caught my eye and gave us great insight into the daily life of a good citizen of the time. A long poster gave a minute by minute schedule of activities from 6am right through to 10pm and each minute accounted for. The shower at the end of a long day was, it seems, ‘optional’!
Imagine Moscow is on until 4th June, for full information about this exhibition and the Design Museum click here.