All posts filed under: Retrograd

In this section, we explore how people relate to the material and cultural legacies of socialism today. Whether engaging in traditions such as jam making, passed down by grandparents who grew up under socialism, or trying to understand the place of Soviet-era monuments and museums in cities today, we want to find out how young people imagine and engage with a past that they themselves haven’t experienced but that is present in their everyday lives.

Number 22: An unwitting monument to Georgia’s modern history

“Their mistake is our opportunity to show people what they did”. William Dunbar uncovers the grim history of 22 Ingorokva Street, Tbilisi’s former Bolshevik secret police prison. The only tangible link with the Red Terror in Tbilisi today, Number 22 might soon be replaced by a modern apartment block. One former resident can save it: Giorgi Margvelashvili, Georgia’s president.

Shadows of the present: An Interview with artist Masha Poluektova

Masha Poluektova is a contemporary artist based in Moscow. Her work has been featured in the city’s Biennial of Contemporary Art (2015), and its Biennial for Young Artists (2014), and this week will be exhibiting in London as part of a group show entitled ‘Between the Lines’. Curated by Stanislav Shuripa, the show is a collaboration between London’s Goldsmiths College and Moscow’s Institute for Contemporary Art and was preceded by a summer school in Russia last year. RETROGRAD talks to her about her work and contemporary art in Russia.

WANTED: Unknown building, Kostava street, Tbilisi

RETROGRAD is looking for information on a seemingly forgotten concrete superstructure on Kostava Street, Tbilisi. All we know so far is that it currently hosts a casino (“Europe”) and – rumour has it – that “they sell good frozen pelmeni there”. Nothing definite is known about its past – a google search for “brutalism” and “Tbilisi” reveals little more than a photograph with the caption “example of brutalism in Tbilisi, Georgia (sorry i dont know name of building)”.