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2 Burnside Architecture- Europe
13 Local Warehouse Photography- Photographers

Frederic Chaubin: Cosmic Communist Constructions Photographed


Frederic Chaubin: Cosmic Communist Constructions Photographed Cover

ISBN13: 9783836525190
ISBN10: 3836525194
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

The beauty of Soviet brutalism: A photographic record of 90 weird and wonderful buildings from the last decades of the USSR
Photographer Frédéric Chaubin reveals 90 buildings sited in fourteen former Soviet Republics which express what he considers to be the fourth age of Soviet architecture. His poetic pictures reveal an unexpected rebirth of imagination, an unknown burgeoning that took place from 1970 until 1990. Contrary to the 1920s and 1950s, no “school” or main trend emerges here. These buildings represent a chaotic impulse brought about by a decaying system. Their diversity announced the end of the Soviet Union.

Taking advantage of the collapsing monolithic structure, the holes in the widening net, architects went far beyond modernism, going back to the roots or freely innovating. Some of the daring ones completed projects that the Constructivists would have dreamt of (Druzhba Sanatorium, Yalta), others expressed their imagination in an expressionist way (Palace of Weddings, Tbilisi). A summer camp, inspired by sketches of a prototype lunar base, lays claim to Suprematist influence (Prometheus youth camp, Bogatyr). Then comes the "speaking architecture" widespread in the last years of the USSR: a crematorium adorned with concrete flames (Crematorium, Kiev), a technological institute with a flying saucer crashed on the roof (Institute of Scientific Research, Kiev), a political center watching you like Big Brother (House of Soviets, Kaliningrad). This puzzle of styles testifies to all the ideological dreams of the period, from the obsession with the cosmos to the rebirth of identity. It also outlines the geography of the USSR, showing how local influences made their exotic twists before the country was brought to its end.

Frédéric Chaubin’s Cosmic Communist Constructions Photographed was elected best book on architecture of the year 2010 by the International Artbook and Film Festival in Perpignan/France (Festival International du Livre d’Art & du Film Perpignan).
Text in English, French, and German


In this volume photographer Frederic Chaubin reveals 90 buildings sited in 14 former Soviet Republics which express what could be considered as the fourth age of Soviet architecture.

About the Author

About the photographer:

Frédéric Chaubin was born in Phnom Penh in 1959. For the last fifteen years, he has been editor-in-chief of the French lifestyle magazine Citizen K. Since 2000 he has regularly featured his photographic works combining architecture and travel. The CCCP collection research was carried out from 2003 to 2010 in an intuitive process.

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Russian lit-mystery fan, September 4, 2011 (view all comments by Russian lit-mystery fan)
Western media images from the Cold War era of the USSR often emphasized drab but huge buildings (when not focusing on military parades), suggesting the only interesting architecture was produced prior to the Russian Revolution. This book shows that there were amazingly creative structures sprinkled throughout the empire's vast 11 time zones. Some buildings look like sets for science fiction movies, while others display unexpectedly beautiful attention to detail. CCCP provides a fascinating look at public and private spaces in the late Soviet era (1970-1990).
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Product Details

Chaubin, Frederic
Individual Photographers - General
Architectural & Industrial
Individual Photographer
Edition Description:
Publication Date:
13.40 x 10.20 in 5.00 lb

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Arts and Entertainment » Architecture » Europe
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History and Social Science » Russia » Picture Books Oversized

Frederic Chaubin: Cosmic Communist Constructions Photographed New Hardcover
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Product details 288 pages Taschen - English 9783836525190 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , In this volume photographer Frederic Chaubin reveals 90 buildings sited in 14 former Soviet Republics which express what could be considered as the fourth age of Soviet architecture.
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