Anna Bronovitskaya, Nikolay Malinin, Yuri Palmin. Alma-Ata: A Guide to Soviet Modernist Architecture 1955–1991

Anna Bronovitskaya, Nikolay Malinin, Yuri Palmin. Alma-Ata: A Guide to Soviet Modernist Architecture 1955–1991Anna Bronovitskaya, Nikolay Malinin, Yuri Palmin. Alma-Ata: A Guide to Soviet Modernist Architecture 1955–1991
  • Year2022
  • LanguageEnglish
  • Edition700
  • Pages352
  • BindingPaperback
  • Price1830 RUB
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Garage publishing program

Garage has published an English translation of the second book in its series on Soviet modernist architecture that launched with a book about Moscow.

Architectural historians Anna Bronovitskaya and Nikolay Malinin and photographer Yury Palmin review sixty buildings—from a circus and a market to palaces of culture and residential estates—that represent various substyles of the era that began with the Khrushchev reform and ended with the collapse of the Soviet Union. Drawing on documentation and interviews with Alma-Ata architects, historians, and former and current inhabitants, Bronovitskaya and Malinin discuss each building within wider cultural, social, and political contexts. Along with Yuri Palmin’s photographs, which were specially shot for the publication and explore the aesthetics of the buildings and their deterioration, the book contains extensive archival material, including drawings, perspectives, and vintage photographs. A guide to the golden age of Kazakhstan’s former capital, Alma-Ata paints a portrait of an international and sophisticated city with a unique character that attracted talented architects and artists from across the Soviet Union.

Today, Alma-Ata could perhaps be called the capital of Soviet modernism. While its former architectural rivals Yerevan, Kiev, Tashkent, and Minsk lost much of their heritage of the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s in the decades that followed, Alma-Ata avoided this fate because in 1997 it lost its capital city status to Astana, which also took on the mission of representing the country architecturally. Alma-Ata is a living museum of Soviet modernism where today you can find a glass library, the first Soviet postmodernist skyscraper, and a dam constructed using the biggest directed explosion in history.

The book was published with the support of Tselinny Center for Contemporary Culture.

Authors

Anna Bronovitskaya is an architectural historian and curator. She graduated in Art History from Moscow State University, before receiving her Candidate of Sciences in Art History degree in 2004. From 1992 to 2016 she lectured at Moscow Architectural Institute. Since 2016, Bronovitskaya has taught at MARCH Architectural School in Moscow. Between 2004 and 2014, she was editor of the architectural magazines Project Russia and Project International. Since 2015, she has given a series of lectures on twentieth-century architecture at Garage Museum of Contemporary Art. Her articles on Soviet architecture have been published in the Russian and international press. She lives and works in Moscow.


Nikolay Malinin is an architectural historian and curator. He graduated in Journalism from Moscow State University in 1992. He is curator of the Archiwood Prize and Chief Editor of the website Drugaya Moskva (The Other Moscow). Exhibition projects include: Das Andere Moskau (New Town Hall, Berlin, 2003), The New Wooden (Shchusev State Museum of Architecture, Moscow, 2009), Will Price. Parallels (Shchusev State Museum of Architecture, Moscow, 2011), Contemporary Temporary (part of the exhibition Temporary Structures in Gorky Park: From Melnikov to Ban, Garage Center for Contemporary Culture, Moscow, 2012), and Knigostroy (Central House of Artists, Moscow, 2012). Author of the books: Moscow Architecture. 1989–2009 (2009), The New Wooden (2010), Metropol: The Moscow Legend (2015), Moscow: A Guide to Soviet Modernist Architecture 1955–1991 (with Anna Bronovitskaya and Yuri Palmin, Garage, 2016, second edition 2019), Contemporary Wooden (2017), Alma-Ata: A Guide to Soviet Modernist Architecture 1955–1991 (with Anna Bronovitskaya and Yuri Palmin, Garage, 2018), The Contemporary Russian Wooden House (Garage, 2020).


Yuri Palmin is an artist and architectural photographer. He graduated in Applied Linguistics from Moscow State University in 1986 and began working as a professional photographer in 1989. Palmin collaborates with contemporary architects and specialist media in Russia and abroad, illustrates books on contemporary and historic Russian architecture, and participates in creative projects with other artists, including Alyona Kirtsova, Alexander Brodsky, Vladislav Efimov, and Sergey Leontiev. He teaches at MARCH Architectural School and is co-founder of the Institute of Modernism. Palmin’s works are in the collections of the Shchusev State Museum of Architecture, Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts, Multimedia Art Museum, Moscow, and private collections. He lives and works in Moscow.

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