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  • Soviet Visuals

"Of all the arts the most important for us is cinema" Vladimir Lenin.


In Soviet Russia, some movies were banned by state censorship from being shown. Often, the reasoning behind the ban remained unknown. Sometimes, it was due to senior leadership’s dissatisfaction with the insufficient display of the role of the Communist Party. Signs of bourgeois influence or excessive sensuality in the film could also be a factor. The emigration of a director or featured actor often resulted in the banning and physical destruction of all copies of the film.



"Agony" historical drama film directed by Elem Klimov. Banned for 10 years. Released in 1985.


"The Formula of Rainbow" 1966 fantasy comedy film directed by Georgy Yungvald-Khilkevich. Never released.


"A Spring for the Thirsty" 1965 poetic drama film directed by Yuri Ilyenko. Banned for 22 years.



"Entering the Sea" 1965 avant-garde short film directed by Leonid Osyka. Never released.

"The Story of Asya Klyachina, Who Loved But Did Not Marry" 1966 film directed by Andrey Konchalovsky. Banned for 20 years.

"The Lonely Voice of a Man" 1977 drama film directed by Alexander Sokurov. Banned for 10 years.

"Galya" 1940 drama film directed by Nadezhda Kosheverova. Never released.


"Intervention" 1968 adventure film directed by Gennady Poloka. Banned for 19 years.


"Trial on the Road" 1971 war drama film directed by Alexey German. Banned for 15 years.


"The Long Farewell" 1971 drama film directed by Kira Muratova. Banned for 16 years.



"While the Dream is Mad" 1978 musical comedy film directed by Yuri Gorkovenko. Banned for 10 years.


‎"Only Three Nights" 1969 romance/drama film directed by Gavriil Yegiazarov. Banned for 20 years.


"Homeland of Electricity" 1967 short film directed by Larisa Shepitko. Banned for 20 years.


"Commissar" 1967 drama film by directed by Alexander Askoldov. Banned for 21 years.

"Repentance" 1984 art film directed by Tengiz Abuladze. Banned for 3 years.



  • Soviet Visuals

Updated: Aug 17

In the USSR, wild mushrooms were a much loved and affordable delicacy. There were lots of ways to use them in meals: mushrooms were fried, baked, grilled, added as a filling for pastries and dumplings, marinated, salted and served as a snack to ice vodka. Sometimes, rumours about poisoning would go around, but every mushroom picker knew the right method

to distinguish safe mushrooms from poisonous ones. Anthropomorphic mushrooms were the characters of Russian fairy tales. In a famous 1991 televised hoax, Soviet musician Sergei Kuryokhin and reporter Sergei Sholokhov stated that Vladimir Lenin was a mushroom.

Illustration from "Mushrooms of the USSR" guidebook, 1980


Still from "Morozko" 1964 Soviet romantic fantasy film based on a traditional Russian fairy tale.


Marinated mushrooms by Andreevsky forestry enterprise. Photo by Viktor Akhlomov, Vladimir region, USSR, 1974


"Edible and poisonous mushrooms of the Central Black Earth Region", book cover, 1986



"Edible and poisonous mushrooms" booklet, 1965


Pencil holder, 1978


“Mushroom picker guide for the Northwest and Central European part of the USSR", 1985


"Mushrooms are a miracle of nature" booklet, 1966


Desk lamp, 1970s


"Tale of Mushrooms" booklet, 1924


Still from the 'Lenin is a Mushroom' TV hoax, 1991


"When picking mushrooms, save the mycelium!" environmental poster, 1965


"Polissya Robinsons" film poster, 1934


New Year tree decoration, 1950s


"Mushrooms" poetry book for kids, 1930


"Mushroom pickers" painting by Tatyana Yeremina, 1953


"Mukhomor" ( Amanita muscaria) art group: Alexey Kamensky, Sergey Mironenko, Konstantin Zvezdochetov, Vladimir Mironenko, Sven Gundlakh. Moscow, 1981


"We are coming, we are coming - we’ll exterminate the entire bourgeoisie”

1924 illustration from children’s magazine Murzilka.


Mushroom cloud from RDS-1, the first nuclear weapon detonated by the Soviet Union. Semipalatinsk Test Site, 29 August 1949



  • Soviet Visuals

Updated: Jun 11



Soviet headdresses most often followed Western fashion with a slight delay. But there were also peculiar specimen.



"Moda" fashion magazine autumn/winter 1967-1968

Chairman of the Council of Ministers Alexei Kosygin and General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union Leonid Brezhnev on the tribune of Lenin's Mausoleum. Photo by Vladimir Musaelyan. Moscow,1975

"USSR in Construction" magazine, 1935

Kindergarten boys. Photo by Margaret Bourke-White, 1941

Arnold Schwarzenegger in Moscow. Photo by P.Kassin, 1988


"Sunday Disco" painting by Igor Simonov,1988

Family archive photo, 1970s

"Women's headgear" advertising poster, 1953

"Russian Snow" painting by Vitaly Polyakov, 1967

Vladimir Lenin in disguise, 1917

"The Provincial Beauty" painting by Evgeny Shukaev,1973

Soviet soldiers after withdrawal from Afghanistan. Photo by Vitaly Armand, Termez, Uzbek SSR, 1989

Fashion model. Photo by I.Kuksov, 1965


Actress Zinaida Reich as Phosphoric Woman in "The Bathhouse" play by Vladimir Mayakovsky, production by Vsevolod Meyerhold. Photo by Alexey Temerin,1930

"Men's rice straw hats" advertising poster, 1952

"Red Army guard on duty" photo by Arkady Shaikhet,1925

Post-Soviet visual. First McDonald's in Moscow. Photo by Martin Parr, 1992

Soldier at military parade. Photo by Ivan Shagin, Moscow, 1940

Premier Nikita Khrushchev at a Collective Farm in Nevinnomyssk, Stavropol Krai, 1958

Cheka secret police agents,1921


Khabarovsk girl. Photo by Dean Conger, 1970s