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Fuel
02 December 2019
Stunning photographs of Soviet Metro Stations from across the former states of the USSR and Russia itself, many of which have never previously been documented For us, said Nikita Khrushchev in his memoirs, 'there was something supernatural about the Metro'. Visiting any of the dozen or so Metro networks built across the Soviet Union between the 1930s and 1980s, it is easy to see why. Rather than the straightforward systems of London, Paris or New York, these networks were used as a propaganda artwork - a fusion of sculpture, architecture and art, combining Byzantine, medieval, baroque and Constructivist ideas and infusing them with the notion that Communism would mean a 'communal luxury' for all. Today these astonishing spaces remain the closest realisation of a Soviet utopia.

Following his best-selling quest for Soviet Bus Stops, Christopher Herwig has completed a subterranean expedition - photographing the stations of each Metro network of the former USSR. From extreme marble and chandelier opulence to brutal futuristic minimalist glory, Soviet Metro Stations documents this wealth of diverse architecture. Along the way Herwig captures individual elements that make up this singular Soviet experience: neon, concrete, escalators, signage, mosaics and relief sculptures all combine build an unforgettably vivid map of the Soviet Metro.

The photographs are introduced by leading architecture, politics and culture author and journalist Owen Hatherley.
By:   Christopher Herwig, FUEL
Introduction by:   Owen Hatherley
Edited by:   Damon Murray, Stephen Sorrell
Imprint:   Fuel
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 160mm,  Width: 200mm, 
Weight:   770g
ISBN:   9780995745568
ISBN 10:   0995745560
Pages:   240
Publication Date:   02 December 2019
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Hardback
Publisher's Status:   Active
Essay by Owen Hatherley * Soivet Metro station photographs from: Moscow * St Petersburg * Tashkent * Kiev * Baku * Tbilisi * Minsk * Yerevan * Novosibirsk * Yekaterinburg * Samara * Nizhny Novgorod * Kryvyi Rih * Dnipro * Kharkiv

Christopher Herwig is a Canadian born photographer and videographer. Currently based in Jordan, his previous homes have included Liberia and Kazakhstan. Owen Hatherley is a British writer and journalist. He is the author of Landscapes of Communism, a history of communism in Europe told through the built environments of former socialist states.

Reviews for Soviet Metro Stations

[Herwig's] photographs are hyper-perfect, composed for maximum effect to showcase each station's dramatically unique personality, energy, opulence and cathedral-like scale.--Shana Nys Dambrot LA Weekly [Soviet Metro Stations] is a stunning collection of images showcasing the elaborate stations that feature a mix of Byzantine, medieval, baroque architectural styles, and the stories behind them.--Tamara Hardingham-Gill CNN Already alive to the unexpected beauty of Soviet bus stops, photographer Christopher Herwig now turns his lens on the grandeur of Soviet design below ground.--Tish Wrigley The Spaces Christopher Herwig celebrate[s] the metro's expansive architectural legacy, travelling as far as Tashkent and Baku.--Tish Wrigley Calvert Journal Christopher Herwig has completed a subterranean expedition photographing the stations of each Metro network of the former USSR. From extreme marble and chandelier opulence to brutal futuristic minimalist glory, Soviet Metro Stations documents this wealth of diverse architecture.--Lizzie Crook ArchDaily Christopher Herwig spent many early mornings capturing the pre-rush-hour emptiness of Soviet metro stations with their exhilarating mix of propaganda, exquisite mosaics and cosmic lighting fixtures.-- The Guardian From Kyivska's Kharkiv Metro to Moscow's Tulskaya stop, Christopher Herwig photographs Soviet-era train stations all over Ukraine, Russia, Georgia and beyond. The project (and now book) follows his previous endeavor photographing bus stations, and the result is quite stunning. Whether featuring opulent chandeliers and luxurious marble or mosaics celebrating hard work, each subterranean scene is a peek behind what was the Iron Curtain.--Laura Mallone Cool Hunting Herwig suggests [with his photographs] that if owning a car was the American dream, a world-class subway was pushed as part of the Soviet dream.--Adele Peters Fast Company Herwig's images take viewers on a journey through the architectural and political influences of decades past.--Andrew Lasane Colossal Herwig's photography [in Soviet Metro Stations] gives an insight into the array of political influences and architectural styles seen during the Soviet era.--Lizzie Crook Dezeen Herwig's photos ... break the underground open like a geode to reveal the intricate world within. Each station seems more imaginative than the next...looking ahead toward a space-traveling, futuristic utopia.--Laura Mallone WIRED Mesmerizingly gorgeous...-- Boing Boing


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