Tuesday, 29 July 2014

Peter Hitchens on Flight MH17 Tragedy

Peter Hitchens has got this spot on.  The EU and NATO stir up trouble in the Ukraine (and other places as well e.g. Georgia) then walk away when things get difficult. The causal link is more EU than Putin.


"Those who began the current war in Ukraine – the direct cause of the frightful murder of so many innocents on Flight MH17 on Thursday – really have no excuse.
There is no doubt about who they were. In any war, the aggressor is the one who makes the first move into neutral or disputed territory.
And that aggressor was the European Union."

Thursday, 17 July 2014

Photo exhibition - The Side Gallery Newcastle

Tucked away up an alleyway off Newcastle's quayside, The Side Gallery & Cinema truly is a hidden gem.  I don't come here often enough, despite the fact that I run past here most days.  When out for a run today, I was passing here and remembered I had seen an advert for their current exhibiution " LEGACY: Russia, Ukraine, Georgia, & The Caucasus", so I decided to pop in for a look.  

The exhibition runs until Sunday 20 July 2014 - so only a few days left!

It is an exhibition of photos by a number of photgraphers: George Georgiou, Lucia Ganieva, Mila Teshaieva, Rafal Milach, Justyna Mielnikiewicz, Donald Weber, Olga Kravets, Maria Morina, Oksana Yushko, Alexander Chekmenev; and covers  the former Soviet Union republics and their "Struggles for independence and identity take place against the intensifying backdrop of a geo-political battle between Russia and European Union. Through a series of imaginative landscapes the exhibition explores shared histories, isolation and engagement, tradition and the desire for modernity"

Wednesday, 9 July 2014

25 Years ago - Congress of Peoples Deputies created

Andrei Sakharov  - the congress's most famous deputy - calls for a multi-party system
Gorbachev's attempt at constitutional reform was the creation of the Congress of Peoples' Deputies of the Soviet Union in 1989.  750 deputies were elected to this new body - intended to comprise the Supreme Soviet - on 26 March 1989, with the first congress taking place over June and July of that year.  Although it was intended to separate the Communist Party from the state, the composition of the body (with allocation of seats to public organisations - the Communist Party, Komsomol, Trade Unions, Academy of Sciences etc) was designed to ensure the Communist Party remained the leading force in this new state body.  At the December session of the twice-yearly congress, Gorbachev berated nuclear physicist and human rights campaigner Andrei Sakharov in a televised debate in which Sakharov was demanding a true multi-party system.

Soviet Space Shuttle, Buran, Moves to All Russian Exhibition Centre

The life-sized prototype of the Buran spaceship — the Soviet's copy of the Space Shuttle was moved from Moscow's Gorky Park to the All-Russian Exhibition Centre (formerly VDNKh) which has been getting a bit of a face lift of late.


Best of 1950s Soviet Design Exhibition - London

It's Time for a Grand Housewarming' 

THE GALLERY FOR RUSSIAN ARTS & DESIGN (GRAD) in London (3-4a Little Portland Street London W1W 7JB) has an exhibition on at the moment about Soviet design in the 1950s onwards.  This is the blurb from their website.


20 JUNE — 24 AUGUST 2014

Exhibition design by CALUM STORRIE and KATYA SIVERS


Work and Play Behind the Iron Curtain brings together over fifty key objects featuring the quirky, colourful and often charming design style that emerged from the 1950s in the Soviet Union.