- What’s On
Almost 25 years after the collapse of the Soviet Union, Salt Galata’s summer show is a timely exploration of post-Stalinist Soviet architecture, a subject both fascinating and repellant. In the 1960s and ’70s architects and engineers across the Soviet republics played a key role in cementing together the vast empire with a highly inventive but universal form of Late Modernism that took its cue from pre-Social Realism imagination of the 1920s and the new internationalist look. It led to an expansion urban space on a hitherto unimaginable industrial scale. At the same time it gave birth to a critical, highly unModernist countermove that recognised the rise of the historical town centre as key to national and regional identity.
The exhibition, programmed by Vienna-based Georg Schöllhammer with Ruben Arevshatyan, includes film, photography, scale models, drawings and ephemera and is installed throughout the very un-Modernist halls of Salt Galata, the 19th-century HQ of the Ottoman Bank. It is based on the research of Local Modernities, a project by Schöllhammer, Arevshatyan, Klaus Ronneberger, Markus Weisbeck and Heike Ander, which initiated the Architekturzentrum Wien exhibition Soviet Modernism 1955-1991 Unknown Stories (2012).