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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Edinburgh College of Art : Architecture - History

Undergraduate Course: Architecture of the Russian and Soviet Avant-Gardes (ARHI10043)

Course Outline
SchoolEdinburgh College of Art CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 4 Undergraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThe first decades of the twentieth century witnessed revolutionary transformations in the cultural and political life of the Russian world. In this period architecture both responded to and accelerated processes of aesthetic and social change. This course examines the architecture of the Russian Empire and, in turn, the Soviet Union from the 1890s to the 1930s. It will describe the emergence of distinctly Russian approaches to modern design before World War 1 and the role of Classicism in the formation of early soviet architecture. It will also address the development of Constructivism, Rationalism and other approaches to architecture and the city. Special attention will be devoted to the international dimension of Russian and Soviet architecture. The work of Fedor Shekhtel, Ivan Fomin, Ivan Zholtovskii, Konstantin Melnikov, the Vesnin brothers, Ivan Leonidov, among others, will be addressed in detail. Students will gain a sophisticated understanding of the complex relationships between architecture and the political, cultural, and technological revolutions that characterize this period.
Course description Not entered
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
Pre-requisitesVisiting students should have at least 3 History of Art/Architectural History courses at grade B or above (or be predicted to obtain this). We will only consider University/College level courses.
** as numbers are limited, visiting students should contact the Visiting Student Office directly for admission to this course **
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Demonstrate a thorough knowledge and understanding of architecture in Russia and the Soviet Union in the period c. 1890 and c. 1940.
  2. Demonstrate a knowledge of the cultural and political context of architectural production in the period covered by this course.
  3. Reflect critically on architecture's role in social change.
  4. Develop an awareness of the complex relationship between aesthetics and politics in architecture.
Reading List
Brumfield, William Craft. The Origins of Modernism in Russian Architecture. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1991.
Buchli, Victor. An Archaeology of Socialism. Oxford: Berg, 1999.
Cooke, Catherine. Russian Avant-Garde Theories of Art, Architecture and the City. London: Academy Editions, 1995.
Gozak, A., Andrei Leonidov, and Catherine Cooke, eds. Ivan Leonidov: The Complete Works. New York Rizzoli, 1988.
Hudson, Hugh D. Blueprints and Blood: The Stalinization of Soviet Architecture, 1917-1937. Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 1993.
Khan-Magomedov, S. O. Alexandr Vesnin and Russian Constructivism. New York: Rizzoli, 1986.
Khan-Magomedov, S. O. Pioneers of Soviet Architecture: The Search for New Solutions in the 1920s and 1930s. New York: Rizzoli, 1987.
Kopp, Anatole. Town and Revolution: Soviet Architecture and City Planning, 1917-1935. New York: G. Braziller, 1970.
Lissitzky, El. Russia: An Architecture for World Revolution. Translated by Eric Dluhosch. Cambridge: M.I.T. Press, 1970.
Lodder, Christina. Russian Constructivism. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1983.
Starr, S. Frederick. Melnikov: Solo Architect in a Mass Society. Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 1978.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
KeywordsRussia,Soviet Union,Architecture
Course organiserDr Richard Anderson
Tel: (131 6)50 8204
Course secretaryMrs Rosie Hall
Tel: 0131 651 5802
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