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  • Soviet Visuals

Soviet leaders had almost unlimited power. Cities and ships were named after them but their nationwide glory was short lived, quickly turning into damnation and oblivion. New leaders promised a new life, but their fate was far from cloudless either.

"The Life of Lenin. History of the Russian Communist Party" booklet, 1924


Leon Trotsky talking with a group of Red Army soldiers,1918-1919


Nikolai Bukharin, 1920s


Queue to Lenin's mausoleum, Moscow, 1965

Joseph Stalin, 1918


"For the blood of our unforgettable Kirov, fire on the fascist reptile! "We boldly walked where death was, but we knew for sure that by dying, we will secure victory." S. M. Kirov " Soviet poster, Leningrad, 1942


First-graders watching the funeral of Yuri Andropov, General Secretary of the CPSU Central Committee on TV. Photo by Vladimir Vorobiev, Orphanage No. 5. Novokuznetsk,1984

Georgy Malenkov. Time magazine cover, 1953


The leaders of the USSR - Nikita Khrushchev and Nikolai Bulganin in London, 1956

Portrait of Mikhail Kalinin, 1940s


Yuri Andropov, General Secretary of the Central Committee of CPSU, 1982

Leonid Brezhnev, Konstantin Chernenko, Alexey Gromyko, Crimea, 1980

"Yakov Sverdlov introduces Lenin to Stalin" sculpture by Ernst Neizvestny,1953

"Brezhnev. Soviet Cosmos" painting by Erik Bulatov, 1977

Dismantling of the monument to Felix Dzerzhinsky on Lubyanka square, Moscow, August 23, 1991

Mikhail Gorbachev, 1980s

"Politburo of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union members" poster, 1977

Lavrentiy Beria, 1930s


Portrait of Leonid Brezhnev, embroidered by Turkmen weavers, 1970

"Yakov Sverdlov" film poster, 1940


Post-Soviet visual. Nesting doll, 2021


  • Soviet Visuals

Updated: Jun 11

Soviet Caucasus was home to many health resorts. A region with natural, ethnic and culinary diversity, it lured vacationers and tourists from all across the country. At the same time, freedom-loving highlanders and commercially minded traders exploiting gaps in the planned economy often created headaches for Kremlin leaders.




Intourist travel booklet, 1931



Circus hippopotamus trainer Stepan Isakyan with his hippo at the Black Sea, 1967


Train number 3/4 "Caucasus" Kislovodsk - Moscow,1977

Dzhigits galloping through the mountains. Photo by Yuri Abramochkin, Dagestan, 1968

"We will defend the Caucasus!" WWII poster, 1943

"Micromotor" Tbilisi plant. The best assemblers in the factory shop with product samples and the USSR quality mark" Photo by Givi Kikvadze and Felix Krymsky, Georgian SSR, 1976

"Batumi under construction" painting by Khasan Inaishvili, Georgian SSR,1980

Soviet army in the streets of Baku, Azerbaijan SSR, 1990

Intourist travel booklet, 1931

Young couple in Tuapse (a town in Krasnodar Krai situated on the northeast shore of the Black Sea, south of Gelendzhik and north of Sochi), 1987

"Greetings from Grozny!" postcard, 1960

Residential buildings in Yerevan. Photo by Dean Conger, Armenian SSR, 1974

"USSR Ministry of Culture sanatorium, Sochi" postcard, 1955

Holidaymakers in Dombay. Photo by Boris Ushmaykin,1970

Barbershop, Tbilisi, Georgian SSR, 1978

A scene in cabaret. Painting by Lado Gudiashvili, 1920s

"Adygea" hotel, Maykop, 1970s


"Travel the Caucasus Mountains" poster, 1947

Black sea beach. Photo by Carl De Keyzer, Sochi,1988

"To the peoples of Caucasus" Soviet propaganda poster, 1920

Panorama of the city of Baku, Azerbaijan SSR. Photo by Yevgeny Khaldey, 1962


Spending roubles in the USSR was in most cases a challenge rather than pleasure. Shortages of many staples, hour long lines, and the sale of scarce items from under the counter became the gloomy signs of the time. The exception were well-stocked hard currency shops, but the overwhelming majority of Soviet people had no access to them. On the other hand traditional bazaars offered good quality costing an arm and a leg.

Kitchen accessories department at a Soviet store, 1980s


Queue for "Greenpeace Breakthrough" record outside "Melodiya" record store, Moscow, USSR, 1989

"Sale of mushrooms on the Danilovsky collective farm market" Photo by B. Anthony Stewart, Moscow, 1959


"Queue" painting by Vasily Kolotev,1985


"It is impossible to walk around the city. Everyone asks where I got my glasses. - And where did you actually get them?" cartoon from "Krokodil" satirical magazine, 1953


Customers of "Beriozka" hard currency store. Photo by Boris Losin, Leningrad, USSR, 1965


Kamchatka crab stall in Magadan,1990


Happy visitor of a liquor store redeeming his ration coupons for vodka during the anti-alcohol campaign, 1980s


"Beriozka" hard currency store, Moscow, 1970s


Seller at Kuznechny food market. Photo by David Turnley, Leningrad, 1991