Art has always been a way to express something, be it your own self or a certain thought. Architecture also gives a physical form to ideas, however strange they may be. And some of the modern buildings are indeed very strange. Let’s take a look at several odd buildings of Russian architects to see it with our own eyes.
1. The State Museum of V.V. Mayakovsky | Moscow, Lubyanskiy Proyezd, 3/6
In the beginning of Perestroika, the construction of a museum dedicated to a famous futurist poet was started by A. Bokov and others. The building, created when artistic community was inspired by the promise of a coming change, has become the most innovative architectural project of the next 15 years. The building itself reads almost like a metaphor. It’s lopsided facade can refer to the simplicity of constructivism or to the failed idea of the revolution. A multilevel architectural phantasy with complex structure leads it’s visitor through the stages of poet’s life. Unfortunately, the museum is currently closed due to the renovation and no date of opening has been stated yet.
2. Russian Academy of Sciences (a.k.a. The Golden Brains) | Moscow, Leninsky Ave, 14
It was created by an architect Yuri Platonov who worked on it from 1974 until 1994. The project started in the era of international modernism but as the time went by, the tastes have changed. New artistic notions of post-modernism have taken over and led to some changes in the initial decor. Now this huge building on the Vorobyovy Gory (Sparrow Hills) is called by locals “The Golden Brains” for it’s distinguishing shiny structure at the top.
3. The Egg House | Moscow, Ulitsa Mashkova, 1
In one of the Moscow alleyways there is an egg. A giant red egg. This is not a sculpture but in fact a house built by S. Tkachenko. There is a garage and an entrance on the ground level, above there are living areas for modern Russian families. The overall look of it evokes many fascinating associations with Easter holidays, brick walls of Kremlin, and, or course, jewelled Fabergé eggs.
4. Cocon Home | Moscow, Prospekt Mira, 26с7
Cocon Home used to be one of the most stylish clubs in Moscow. D. Khromov, V. Savinkin and V. Kuzmin managed to create an almost surreal world inside of a four-storey building. Everything is constructed to look like a cocoon with it’s gentle curves and organic shapes. Around this plywood structure runs a flight of steps made out of glass. The whole place reminds of a hill with a multitude of caves to explore. Soft carpets and warm light add to it’s inviting atmosphere. Unfortunately, currently the club is closed but many hope the space will soon be reopened to public.
5. Parus | Moscow, Ulitsa Grizodubovoy, 2
This apartment house on Khodynka Field has earned many different nicknames because of it’s shape over the years: raindrop, ear, wave, snail and many more. But mostly locals call it “parus” which means “sail”. Such an unusual curve of the facade weren’t in the initial project. This designer decisions were, as some say, happy accidents. They occurred because of the intent of the investor to use the territory as efficiently as possible. The size of the whole building is astonishing on it’s own, but what makes it so special is it’s gracefulness. In the end, the authors of the project succeeded to create an unusually elegant architectural form using only clear lines and elegant simplicity.
6. School on Kashenkin Lug | Moscow, Ulitsa Kashenkin Lug, 7
One of the most recent noteworthy architectural projects is a school for children with autism spectrum disorder, created by A. Chernikhov and N. Scherbakova. It’s design has provoked many disputes among people. Some say that beautiful schools like this one should be built for other children as well, others claim that the building is a lunacy and will drive anyone mad. The whole design is rather unusual. This shows in it’s colourful facade, geometrically-shaped windows, curved lines. It’s interior is far from plain either. Bright colours, differently shaped holes in the walls, small lights scattered on the ceilings that look like stars. However controversial this building may be, there is no denying that it is one of the most ambitious and creative architectural projects in recent years.
As you can see, there are plenty strange houses in Russian capital to explore. Not everybody may find them conventionally beautiful but they are definitely one of the city’s most fascinating highlights!