The project explores the church ruin in contemporary Russian landscape and how it becomes a metaphor for the country’s recent history. Although the exact number of churches forcibly closed during the Soviet period is not known, it may be assumed that between four and five thousand churches currently remain in ruins. Similarly to the classical ruin, a recurrent symbol in the Western art, the ruined churches stand as relics of Russia’s own Antiquity, a different civilisation appearing long gone. As Russia turns to its past to re-discover the national identity, the question remains: who does the country succeed to, those who built these churches, or those who were shutting them down? Could it be neither, or both?
Petr Antonov: Ruins
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