Price: 29.50 euro
For sale at http://www.propagandaworld.org
Table medal made in the Soviet Union. The text on the medal reads:”Alexey Victorovich Shchusev Architect Academician 1873-1949″. Shchusev was the designer of the Lenin Mausoleum. Alexey Victorovich Shchusev (1873-1949) was a Russian and Soviet architect who was successful during three consecutive epochs of Russian architecture, Art Nouveau (broadly construed), Constructivism, and Stalinist architecture, being one of the few Russian architects to be celebrated under both the Romanovs and the communists, becoming the most decorated architect in terms of Stalin prizes awarded.
On the night of 22–23 January 1924, Shchusev was summoned to the Kremlin to receive the most important commission of his life, the design of the Lenin Mausoleum.
The reasons for choosing Shchusev remain unknown. Dmitry Chmelnizki speculates that, regardless of Shchusev’s conservative planning policies, he had already become “the architect closest to the Communist Party elite”. The first, temporary, wooden mausoleum was designed overnight and erected in three days, at temperatures reaching -30 °C.
Due to a lack of time and resources, Shchusev’s original proposal was scaled down to a bare minimum. The resulting makeshift hut was too small for its intended role as a communist shrine; thus in March 1924 Shchusev was commanded to design and build a larger temporary structure that could also function as a tribune for the use of government officials. The second wooden mausoleum was built in April and opened to visitors in August 1924.
Five years later, the government decided that the concept “had passed the test of time”, and awarded Shchusev a contract to design a third, permanent mausoleum.