• After the Revolution building materials were very scarce for many years afterwards. whilst this building strives hard to look like its made of concrete, it is, in fact, made of poor quality clay blocks which are now decaying to reveal the construction technique.

NARKOMFIN decaying, Moscow

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This has to be one of my favorite buildings in the world. One of the key reasons I visited Moscow in January 1998 was to study the buildings of this Heroic Communist era. Narkomfin is the finest of these structures, although now decaying. It is the best example of a truly Constructivist building embodying all the social ideals of the time.

fotofacade, chrisinphilly5448, and 29 other people added this photo to their favorites.

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  1. | Andreas | 85 months ago | reply

    did you check out Melnikov house as well?

  2. archidave 85 months ago | reply

    Chris - I hope it is still there. It is part of an ongoing attempt at preservation. the present situation in Moscow is very concerning. Much dark and sinister goings on in the property and development industries, and much Mafia involvement. The architects son was recently assassinated by the mafia for standing in the way of some project or another that involved this sort of demolition.
    Much of the work at the Bauhaus was inspired by the pioneering work of the soviet designers and the Soviet design school VkhUTEMAS not the other way around! if course there were many Russians who joined Bauhaus from the USSR when Stalin became dominant.

    Andreas T Of course! It was freshly white after being clad in scaffolding for almost a decade. Melnikov was cool, but really he just mimics the more exotic forms of the more academic architects who were doing it for rational reasons.

  3. chrisinphilly5448 85 months ago | reply

    Dave, Thanks for your narrative.

    I know the Bauhause came as a result of artists come from Russia (which is where Kandinsky, one of my art heroes, comes from).

    The assinations you described are horrendous. When I worked for a broker in San Diego that was from Russia. Everytime we sent a packet of forms there, they couldn't have any information pre-filled in because the threat of kidnapping and or assassination was so high. (There were also a lot of ex-military that had absconded with money and valuables from the treasury around the time Communism fell and there was close to anarchy-like conditions in the country).

  4. | Andreas | 85 months ago | reply

    I agree. I like Tatlin's stuff better even if it was on paper / too bad for the wedding cake architecture that came afterwards

  5. archidave 85 months ago | reply

    I quite like allot of that as well. It has a certain decorative appeal.

  6. archidave 85 months ago | reply

    Thnaks for the posting on the blog archidose!

  7. weyerdk 81 months ago | reply

    Mmmm, Ginzburg on flickr... Exiting, this is not seen everyday! Very cool images, by the way - goes to show that the 'modern ruin' can in fact compete in tragic beauty with all the old & classic stuff :-)

  8. archidave 81 months ago | reply

    It is a great place. It is such a shame it lies decaying and probably doomed

  9. sapphirestocking 80 months ago | reply

    Dave, I have spent three hours looking at your photos. Then I had to create a Yahoo account so that I could comment. Then I had to learn to sign in to it. That took me another hour. Then I had to go through all the photos again to find this one, as this is the one I wanted to add my comment to. This is an evening I have dedicated to doing my work. But your photos are worth it.
    I LOVE your eye. It is the eye I would have had if I'd ever had a good camera. I spent 17 years in Bristol and didn't like its vibes, but these photos are so moving. I now live near North Cerney. Those photos are just perfect. I love this architecture, too, and saw a lot of it in the east of Hungary. THANKS for a great evening! All power to your eye, finger, shutter, etc.!!

  10. archidave 80 months ago | reply

    sapphirestocking You really flatter me with the effort is sounds you went to just to comment. Thank you so much. I am glad that you like my photo's. Im not sure if you will have found them yet, but there are a few pics on my stream of North Cerney church if you search the tags. Sorry Bristol didn't work out for you. I am not native Bristolian, but I love the place since i moved here about 7 years ago.

  11. Wzrdry 77 months ago | reply

    Great shot and great building and it's going directly into my favorites.

  12. archidave 77 months ago | reply

    thnaks. I have no new news on its fate so if anyone knows i would be much obliged

  13. alex_zhem 71 months ago | reply

    tihs building is in the same state now, still decaying on its place

  14. archidave 71 months ago | reply

    Thank you. It is at least good to know that it is still standing at least!

  15. mia1910 [deleted] 69 months ago | reply

    brilliant picture

  16. archidave 69 months ago | reply

    :) thank you kindly

  17. cymro76 62 months ago | reply

    I've just discovered this building reading up on Le Corbusier. I knew I'd seen it before somewhere - here! It's very sad that it's being allowed to fall to pieces. There's a similar building in London that been restored isn't there?

  18. archidave 62 months ago | reply

    Yeh Corb had something of a rough time in teh end when he was in Russia. Never got paid for a lot of his work. The building you might be thinking of is the Lawn Road Flats, also known as the Isokon building. have you got this chap as a contact? www.flickr.com/photos/unexpectedbacon/2133569791/
    I have no idea what is happening with this building now. It seems to have vanished off my radar for the time being

  19. cymro76 62 months ago | reply

    That's the one! I knew it had a single "Madonna" name too :D

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