|Facade of Hotel Uzbekistan (Image courtesy Wayne Diamond)|
After the devastating Tashkent earthquake of 1966, many large-scale apartment blocks were quickly built to house the homeless. Later, several grand buildings were constructed as well as the marvellous metro system.
The massive Hotel Uzbekistan, centrally located at Amir Timur square, Tashkent, is a classic example of Soviet 1970's modernist architectural style. In its heyday celebrities such as Federico Fellini, Marcello Mastroianni and Raj Kapoor stayed there, as well as the power brokers of the USSR.
|Tashkent's State Museum of History of Uzbekistan|
Earlier this year Taschen published Frédéric Chaubin's book CCCP:Cosmic Communist Constructions Photographed. Chaubin, editor of the very cool French lifestyle magazine Citizen K, documented 90 buildings, constructed from the 1970s through to 1990, that dominate the urban landscapes of 14 former Soviet republics.
It's a fascinating record of daring, imaginative, even eccentric structures. As Chaubin comments in the introduction: "The key to Soviet architecture is above all political. The causes of its evolution are to be sought not in architectural theory but, more prosaically, in the regime and its evolution. Nowhere else and nowhere over such a long period of time has the urban landscape been so directly shaped by power”.
|Frédéric Chaubin's image of the Tashkent Circus|
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