Lenin’s earthly apotheosis
The funeral committee of the chairman of the Council of People’s Commissars of the Soviet Union Vladimir Ilyich Lenin was established on the night of January 21st, right after his death. It was renamed the Memorialization Committee of V. I. Ulyanov (Lenin) with F. I. Dzerzhinsky serving as the chairman and V. D. Bonch-Bruyevich, K. E. Voroshilov, A. S. Enukidze, V. M. Molotov, A. I. Muralov and M. M. Lashevich serving on the panel. As the committee’s title indicates, its first purpose was to organize the party leader’s funeral, but later the commemoration of Lenin became the group’s main priority. Among other things the committee was tasked to plan the construction of Lenin’s mausoleum. Following L. B. Krasin’s and A. V. Lunacharsky’s report in November 1924, given that Lenin’s body had been embalmed, the committee decided to hold a tender process for the mausoleum’s floor plan. Officially, the process opened on the 9th of January 1925 under the title “Tender process of the 1st stage of the projects for construction of the monument for V. I. Lenin on the Red Square in Moscow.” The tender process was launched “by 3 announcements in Izvestia of the Central Executive Committee of the Soviet Union with a call to everyone who wished to participate in the process including a statement”. The project submissions were supposed to present a descriptive idea of the monument with drawings or sketches and they didn’t not have to be scale. The second time the tender process was announced in 1926 the Committee received about 100 projects from architects, artists, engineers, workers, peasants, teachers, students and others.
Lenin’s body was embalmed by Professor A. I. Abrikosov after his autopsy on January 22nd, 1924. The body was preserved for 6 days during a period of commemorative events. On January 26th Izvestia and Pravda published the Presidium of the Central Executive Committee’s resolution, which stated that the crypt housing Lenin’s body would be built in Red Square and would be open to visitors. The newspaper Rabochaya Moskva published this resolution under the title “Lenin’s body will be preserved”.
K. E. Voroshilov, A. S. Enukidze and L. B. Krasin acted as unofficial leaders of Lenin’s funeral commission. It was Krasin who was associated with the “competition of the 1st stage of the projects for construction of the monument for V. I. Lenin on the Red Square in Moscow.” After numerous meetings of experts in surgery and anatomy, and a long search for specialists, it was decided that Lenin’s body would be embalmed using a method that had been developed by professors V. I. Vorobyev and B. I. Zbarskiy. This official decision was announced in the media on May 24th, 1924. The initial opening of the mausoleum took place on August 1st, 1924, 4 months after the embalming of Lenin’s body.
The mausoleum was built in 3 stages. A first wooden construction was built on the basis of A. V. Schusev’s project for the funeral ceremony. A second, improved wooden mausoleum was built by May 1st, 1924 while Lenin’s body was embalmed. The permanent stone mausoleum, that stands today, was completed in October 1930. Since the projects submitted to the tender process didn’t satisfy the Committee’s expectations, they decided to use an existing model of the mausoleum designed by Alexey Shchusev. Shchusev’s granite mausoleum was based on the plan of previous ones — utilizing forms of truncated pyramid.
These are examples of the amateur proposals for Lenin’s Mausoleum, which were sent to the national tender process in the late 1920s. They can be found in the Russian State Archive of Social and Political History. Most of these proposals were developed by people who had no direct relationship to visual arts and architecture. The proposals were presented in a descriptive textual format, without accompanying drawings or blueprint. The unfortunate situation was fixed: every single project was subjected to generative reconstruction condensing textual formulations of the projects into precise—and in some cases monstrous—architectural forms. Gathered together within space that looks quite similar to soviet Exhibitions of National Economy, the materialized Lenin’s mausoleums underlines intertwinement of architectural formations with conservation, sustaining and proliferation of such a complex multispecies biota that today Lenin is. Today, got out of oblivion and visualized, the exhibition’s objects compose a peculiar retrofuturology that delineates further directions of both biological and symbolic evolution of Lenin. This evolution has exact chances to sustain even after the collapse of Russian—and even human—history.
Map of content:
Visualization: Ivan Spitsyn
Sound: Ivan Napreenko
Original amateur projects
First of all, the design of the Great Leader’s Mausoleum should symbolize the sadness of his loss. This should be expressed by the lower part of the monument, crushed down in the form of a gravestone, of course of increased size, according to the value of the deceased. This plate is laid in the usual way parallel to the walls of the Kremlin. However, the monument should not only express sadness, but also call for the continuation of the Leader’s battle, for the struggle for the bright future of mankind, for communism. «He is dead, but his visions live on». This call for this struggle should be expressed by the entire Lenin’s figure crowning the mausoleum. The upper part of the monument is made of a series of square elongated prisms set at right angles to the facade. Raising the figure of Lenin to a considerable height should emphasize how high he rose above the average person, above the mass of people, and the location of prisms, having a movement upwards, as if inviting everyone to rise after their leader. The prism setting at right angles in the section with the usual way personifies Lenin’s struggle, the struggle with the pattern dictated by capitalism, which enslaved the world; from the tombstone usually located, personifying capitalism, and the prisms rising one above the other show the victory gained by communism over the template — capitalism. The guiding five-pointed star in the hands of Lenin calls upon the working people of all five countries of the world and illuminates the road to communism for them, personifying the latter’s five-pointed internationalism. The top of the prisms is stoned to match the walls of the Kremlin. Litter urns, constantly burning on the tombstone, indicate the memory of the Leader and his testaments that has not been weakened for a minute.
Project of a monument to V. I. Lenin in the form of five-pointed star: the ladder (5 sides) leads to the centre where Lenin’s statue is based around which is lined up in large letters «Lenin».
«I ask you to give an answer whether this project will be awarded». Signature
Pavel Nikolaevich Baranov — worker-locksmith. Komsomol, year of birth 1906. Address − Rybinsk
This project I sent is the second one, because the first one I sent in November 1925.
I am currently unemployed and I have all hope for this project, since the financial situation is very bad.
May 3, 1926
This project Is called «In memory of Lenin»
The design of the monument:
The monument is based on a pyramid as a sign of the centuries-old slavery of mankind. The monument stands on the foundation of a five-pointed star.
The dynamics of the construction of the monument are as follows: three internationals and the history of the Party are taken as a principle, — a monument-grave, — a monument-tribune, — a monument-museum, — Lenin’s earthly apotheosis.
Principle of the three Internationals:
1. The first as the International, as no longer existing, is expressed in two niches where the busts of Karl Marx and Engels are placed. In the niches on the sides are quotations from Lenin’s speeches and books, referring to the First International.
2. The Second International is revealed by the figures of workers, workers and in bas-reliefs. In the figures, the oppression and exploitation of the bourgeoisie of the working class is expressed, and in the bas-reliefs — its struggle and defeat.
3. The Third International is revealed already in the rush of the working class to fight and is identified by a group of workers of large countries with flags and singing of the International.
Apotheosis. The final part of the monument ends with the figure of Lenin, expressing the Great Tribune, standing on the pedestal of the hemisphere of the Earth in a semi-profile. In front of the pedestal is the inscription: «Lenin». From the sides and behind are bas-reliefs on the life of Ilyich / attempt on his life, etc. A platform, protected by a grating, goes around the whole pedestal, for inspecting the upper part of the Monument from all sides …
March 31, 1925
Domaratskiy N. I.
Motto: «From the Realm of Necessity To the Realm of Freedom» …
At the top of a gray granite rock, taken in straight falling lines, forming a complete triangle with the base (… not being an artist, I try to give at least a hint of the expression of the desired idea) with a sharp half-turn of the Ilyich figure. The left hand is extended forward (to the historical museum) with a dry sharp movement. The gesture of the spokesman-leader… He is facing the following figures. Semi-naked workers (at first powerful nude bodies were painted to me, maybe they would give more dynamics of movements, but they fell out of the general style)…This is a clumsy labour, such as it has grown in basements, but it has stepped over everyday facets and, thus, has found its pathos and beauty to overcome. They raise a stone lump that squeezed their shoulders, they come out to freedom… In a cleft, in a gap, where there are only heads, shoulders and arms stretched in tension — the shoulder and head of a woman. She put out her hand, hugging her knees naked boy, almost crawled out.
Dear Comrade. I have just read your excellent book «The History of Workers’ and Peasants’ Party», and I felt that you are the person who will feel the project of the monument to the Great deeply described below. Now they are shouting that there is no need at the grave of the monument at all. No, it should be. It is necessary one on the grave, and the other one at least on the Sparrow Hills (Vorobyovi gory), over Moscow.
I. At the grave. First of all, a small, simple but very elegant building should be constructed over the grave, maybe in the Moorish style. Its purpose is twofold: firstly, for the sake of preservation of the monument inside, and secondly — to give pilgrims from all over the world the opportunity in all weather to bow to the great grave and be thoughtful. The monument should be colorful, bright, from different breeds of marble, granite, malachite, jade, etc. A large stone bed in the length of the grave with a head. Vladimir Ilyich rests on his back. Head chest, part of the hands in his usual clothes, and further, the body and legs are covered with a curtain falling on the steps. On all sides, wide steps lead to the bed. On the steps, heading towards the lodge, up to a hundred figures in human growth, men and women, each figure — a peasant or a worker depicts either one of the national world, or one of the USSR nationalities. Racial features and national costumes should clearly emphasize that here «the proletarians of all countries». All in their hands wreaths, bouquets, baskets of flowers. Two female figures are already at the top and gently remove the head of the Sleeper in flowers. The figure of the Sleeper is huge, up to three sazhen. At a distance of five sazhen around the monument is a light three-tiered gallery for viewing all the details.
No inscriptions… The main impression should be a quiet, joyful, not dark: he rests after great work, and the peoples of the world lovingly adorn the colors of the great worker.
II. Monument to the living. It is almost on top of a steep mountain. The left foot takes a step to the top, the right foot rests firmly on the rock. <…> Reader. If you recognize my project as worthwhile and wish to call me, place the call on the first page of Izvestia.
Sergei Nikolaevich Kalyagin
«The project on the idea of building a monument to comrade Lenin»
A member of the party (Lenin’s CPSU, 1921)
The main idea. There can be no darkness where the dust of the great leader of the World Proletariat lies. He doesn’t exist. His visions and purpose of his life with us. Let the train of Leninism make the whole bourgeois world shudder.
… please take into account that the person representing the project has absolutely no ability to master the visual arts.
The project. 1) The monument is scattered throughout Red Square, containing in itself.
Central building. It is a small mound of no more than a real mausoleum made of some material on which the hammer lies diagonally, intersecting with the silhouette of the Armored train that has turned around in the form of a sickle, whose locomotive is at its very top at … become an anvil (the future platform for speakers) all this in a strong movement. From the pipe of a steam locomotive rushes out rushing to a height bending filling the arrow of the lightning, the arrow bends according to the number of words «Workers of all countries unite!», representing the shape of a cylinder made of thick glass of course red color, in which the mass of electric lamps. Due to the lighting effects, the steam locomotive also has a luminous view — in front of its name — LENIN. BRIGHTENING.
The construction is a train station made of glass to the color of the pavement not higher than two arshin from the ground, having the shape of a rectangle <…> In general, whatever the weather — nothing can describe the other world, which Ilyich left to us — speaking in his words — there are
Soviet Authority (plus) Electrification (equally) Socialism.
S. A. Kamenskiy
Motto: John Reed
The idea of a mausoleum monument. The solution of the problem: from capitalism (chaotic mass of the stone), through the dictatorship of the proletariat (star), to communism (radio construction).
The view from the square: from the mass of rough black stone, as if lifted by it over the square, a dark scarlet star appears; even higher, proceeding from the dome of the star, dragging the whole mass of the mausoleum upwards behind it, and at the same time giving it grandeur and the paramount importance on the square flowing up the openwork cone of the radio structure. Taking into account the achievement of technology, the view of the mausoleum is designed not only for the viewer from the square, but also for the viewer from above; the mausoleum will be presented to him in the form of a bright scarlet five-pointed star, with a dull silver circle in the middle, on which the hammer and sickle stands out …
Details of separate parts of the star: ray A — input; [to die with Lenin] on the door leading to the corridor — the black inscription «Lenin died». The color of the walls is darkly oppressive. The lighting is moderate through a lantern in the ceiling, giving a uniform reddish light. <…> The impression of both the bas-reliefs and the entire internal appearance of this ray must be sorrowful, oppressive.
Ray B — exit. Above the door leading to the square is the inscription: «But his visions lives on». The color of the walls and ceiling is bright, scarlet, life. Lighting … imitating sunlight. On the walls are joyful bas-reliefs. Subject: work, life, construction of the USSR. The impression made by him (ray b) is the last one, which most of all influences the general impression of visiting the mausoleum, which should be invigorating, calling for a struggle in the footsteps of the Great Teacher.
Ray E (Lenin is a human). It should be a museum that paints the life and personality of Lenin most fully. It is necessary to arrange the geobiographic data well in chronological order from input to output.
Ray D (Lenin and the Party). The museum, figuring out the role of Lenin, as the founder and leader of the Party.
Ray C (Leader of the Rebels and the Oppressed). Lenin as a friend of the oppressed of the whole world, as a world scientist, as a leader and teacher of the working people of all countries. The color of the walls inside the mausoleum is scarlet.
In the central hall there should not be a single decoration; everything is not for entertainment, the attention of the visitor should be focused only on Ilyich, so that his image in the coffin will be imprinted in memory forever.
I accidentally read in the newspaper about the immortalization of Lenin’s memory. Definitely, projects will be given, but will the content be given… Please, don’t make fun of my wonderful feeling. I am not an artist or a draftsman, but I would like a drop of my thinking to be invested in eternity, because Lenin did a lot for me.
That, in my opinion, what should be said about Lenin and his visions; let it be a statue or a picture. If a lot of people do not understand the present time, it will be clear to the generation.
In the revolution, Lenin was not alone, and therefore his statue should be a statue of the group.
The monster wants to thresh the child of a woman who has given birth to a child.
The monster is in the water with one foot standing on land, and the other on the back of the monster in October costume. One hand takes from child, and the other calls. All his [thoughts] should be in appeal. A worker in a hammerman’s costume with a double-pointed hammer and with both hands hurries him to the head of a monster who is very tenacious. A peasant, in a bast shoes costume, a home-made dressing-gown and a sash, a modern headdress of a pitchfork at the ready, runs after the worker somewhat in the distance.
The faces of the figures: Lenin, the worker and the peasant are not evil, but the worker and the peasant are conscious.
Lenin’s figure must rise above the whole group. A tail monster wrapped around Lenin’s leg, a searchlight that illuminates Lenin’s figure should be placed at the tail of it, and in the back side should be placed imperceptibly around a circle of lamps that illuminate the rest of the group, from top to bottom, there should be no other lighting in the vicinity.
If possible, the Red Square should be illuminated with the light of the figure, but the lights should be in place.
Further from the body of Lenin in the mausoleum there should be a glass window (closable as needed). The audience visited by the mausoleum see the child — the expression of the child’s eyes must be astonished rational and looking at Lenin.
Only a child is visible from the window. Below there should be an inscription explaining the meaning of the group.
The group must be bronze.
A woman is the cause of the birth of a human.
The child is humanity.
Monster — Capital — injustice.
Lenin accepting a child is the idea of communism.
Lenin, calling, conveying the idea of communism.
Worker and peasant — Revolution.
The monster that wrapped around Lenin’s leg is Capital, an injustice that resists the idea of communism.
The searchlight is the light of communism [coming out] from the tail of the Beast, through its partial defeat.
The monster itself must be in death agony.
Around the darkness — and the light from the group.
The light of communism is cutting through the darkness.
Caption: «In the name of the oppressed»
I am not an architect or an artist, but I have been haunted for a long time persistently — and I decided to write about it — such a project of a monument to Ilyich on the Red Square: a monument — a grandiose figure of Ilyich, a figure — a high-rise building. The place — between the mausoleum and the monument to Minin and Pozharsky.
A large pedestal rock — it is in its basement part — a tomb where Lenin’s body rests in the hall. This rock is, of course, of enormous size, in order to be the basis for a grand structure — a figure. On this pedestal — legs — buildings of the leader, hollow columns — houses of three or four floors; next — body — a grand building of five or six floors, the construction of the latest technology; Upstairs − a head in Ilyich’ hat. Thus, Ilyich — a grandiose person — a skyscraper — I suppose a monument with a height of fifteen or twenty floors. Here is the center of social life of workers in Moscow. In «Ilyich» there are all Trade Unions, Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (the workers’ and peasants’ party), the Central Executive Committee of the USSR — in a word, all the central offices, the Halls for concerts and meetings, perhaps the reading room — exhibitions of workers’ periodicals.
In the daytime — Ilyich can be seen ten or fifteen miles away, at night it penetrates the mist with huge searchlight eyes and shouts to the whole world that Moscow is red, Ilyichevskaya, not «Malinozvonnaya».
If you find a project of eccentricity — not with satisfaction — it is not a specialist who writes, but simply a person to whom the memory Ilyich is terribly dear.
Peter Korolev, Sergey Maklashev
Dear Mikhail Kalinin!
In the remote villages of the Republic of Tatarstan we heard that the USSR Central Election Commission is conducting preparatory work on the creation of a monument to Ilyich, the glorious leader of the RKPb (the workers’ and peasants’ party of bolsheviks’), the founder of the world association of workers, who gave all his strength for the liberation of the working people. The members of the young communist generation, named after his name, decided to take whatever they could to create this monument. We are not artists or professors, but nuggets in terms of art — one peasant, the other — a worker, we are now studying Leninism and applying it in work among peasants under the leadership of the RKPb.
With Komsomol greetings, the peasant Peter Korolev, the worker Sergey Maklashev.
- Our monument project is staged in a five-pointed star, which is quite understandable the significance of this star … The foundation of the monument project resembles a house in Gorki, where Lenin died…
S. N. Korolev
…I invented a device for the production of large glass objects in a mechanized way, not previously submitted to manual processing… to give an answer… does the commission want to make the mausoleum completely out of glass.
Assumptions: to make a big dome with the output and entrance doors to the style of the current look of the mausoleum… the price of the device of these domes will be cheap, no more than three or four thousand will cost all two domes, but this will require the construction of a new plant that does not exist abroad. The construction of this will cost about one million rubles…
From the glass mausoleum it will be possible to see V. I. Lenin day and night without going inside, and the same method can also be used to make a glass coffin. I do not demand anything for my invention, and upon receiving a patent I grant it to the Government of the U.S.S.R.
A. M. Koronov
I’m attaching a photo of the drawing of the monument to V. I. Lenin with this, I communicate my biography. The social status of a worker — I’m currently working as a turner at the «Burevestnik» factory. Until 1917 I lived in the city of Warsaw, worked on buildings (hence, I was familiar with the architectural work, because I worked as a leader, I know the theory of architecture badly). From 1917 headed the workshop of the Tula Arms Factory. Dismissed by state reduction…
I have been working for 32 years from 12 years of age… I have 15 main professions. Of all the professions, I have a passion and love for architectural business, due to the lack of theoretical knowledge, but also without an apartment… I cannot use my practical knowledge of architectural construction.
External view: consists of four floors with four towers at the corners of fourteen entrance-exit doors — five globes, five sculptures, eight galleries, four chairs, four tribunes / for Presidium / arch, eight ordinary windows, eight round windows and eight banners.
Description of the first floor of the structure: The underground hall consists of three compartments, the first Division, for the rest of the ashes of Comrade LENIN… The second floor consists of the library… The glass doors with the inscription about the Revolution of 1917 and the death of Comrade LENIN in 1924 the letters are red, illuminated by electric light.
The structure of the four towers: each tower has one door, the roof − four-sided glass. Each edge has five-pointed stars. In total in each tower there are sixteen stars which are illuminated with Electric light from the inside. In the center of each roof of the tower stands a globe with the designation of States. The globe is made of glass, illuminated from inside by electricity, the territory of the USSR is illuminated in Red, and the rest of the States in dark blue. After the Revolution took place in each state, a Red tire is inserted into the territory of that State (each globe has one sculpture: first — a worker with a hammer in his right hand, second — a cross with a sickle in his right hand, third − a female worker holding in her right hand the slogan for the emancipation of women, fourth — a young working man Komsomolets in his right hand holding a banner with the slogan. The left hands of each sculpture points to Lenin’s ashes).
In the center of the roof there is a red Globe with the image of the USSR States… On the globe in the USSR there is a sculpture of Lenin — giving a speech, making a gesture with his right hand, and holding «Pravda» newspaper in his left hand (the newspaper made of glass is illuminated with electric light).
The project of the building, which I propose, should not be only a repository of the body of Ilyich, but also a center of culture, a center of science throughout the USSR. The building should be built of iron-concrete, have a pentagonal shape… the entire width of the Red Square. The height of the building should be from 300 meters (each floor should be 10 meters high), and the area of each subsequent floor should have a smaller volume than the previous one. So the building will be with steps. At the edges there should be a road that spirals up, but in addition on each side of the floor should go to the upper floor.
At the very top of the building there should be a statue of Ilyich (sculptor Kozlov) 10 meters high cast in bronze. Below on every corner of the first floor there should be a statue of the leader of the revolution, 5 meters high in this order: First corner — Karl Marx, Second corner — Karl Liebknecht, Third corner — Khalturin, Fourth corner — Epelyabov, Fifth corner — Ilyich. In addition, at each corner of the subsequent floors there should be busts of all members of the workers’ government. Each floor is a pentagon from the middle of which sides are corridors central to the center of the pentagon, and from them other small corridors diverge. In the center of the building there is the lifting machine from the very platform where Ilyich stands — to the basements of the building. The windows facing the outside should be 7 meters high, and glazed with transparent glass. The spiral road from the outside should be protected by a barrier and an iron grid, the width of the road should be designed for 20 meters. On the square where Ilyich stands, a radio telephone station and a loudspeaker should be installed, which will announce all the news to the people of Moscow, in addition a biometeorological station should be located there, in addition there should be spotlights installed to illuminate Moscow. On each side of each floor, at night, the electric emblem of the USSR should illuminate half of the floor. By day, the building should seem like a gray monster, at night as a huge ghost. A huge banner of the USSR flutters over the statue of Ilyich. The ground floor is the coffin of Ilyich. In the center of it there is a huge pentagonal hall, in the foreground there is the tomb of the «great». On the walls of the hall are bas-reliefs of gray color from the life of Ilyich, a cornice pattern: the chain of bas-relief of Ilyich’s masks, the tomb is a book of 5 meters length and 3 wide, with an oval cut through which Ilyich’s face is visible. The inscription «Ulyanov-Lenin» is diagonally displayed.
The hall is a greenhouse, which contains all the most precious species of the plant kingdom, (there must be trees). The remaining area of the lower floor is divided into six parts. Four identically big, the other two are small. Hall No. 1 is a trapeze, this hall serves as the hall-museum of Ilyich, hall number 2 serves as a museum of revolution, No. 3 hall is a museum of political figures of the USSR, No. 4 hall serves as the library of Ilyich, all books of Ilyich and about Ilyich are included. No. 5 and No. 6 are the centers of all telephone installations, the city electricity management, all signal installations in the building. The second floor is the central library of the USSR, specially equipped with the latest technology. The third floor is a premise for the Communist Institute and the university in general. The fourth floor is floor mechanics, especially for different institutes of mechanics and for mechanical masters. The fifth floor is the floor of technology, the sixth floor is the floor of physics, the seventh floor is the floor of chemistry, the eighth floor is the floor of aviation, the ninth floor is the medicine floor, the tenth floor is the communist floor, the Comintern, the Party and the central Party club of the USSR are located here. The eleventh floor is the floor of the Komsomol members, the KIM RAKSM and the central club of the Komsomol members of the USSR are located here, the twelfth floor is the floor of the young Leninists, there are the Lenin Young Pioneers Bureau and the central club of the pioneers of the USSR. The thirteenth and fourteenth floors are sports halls, the other floors are occupied by various scientific institutions and workshops, laboratories and classrooms. In the basement of the building there is a power station, which supplies electric light and energy for a lifting machine, besides there are printing houses in the basement that are printed by all publishers of those institutions that are located in the building. All five main entrances have their own names: First to Leninsky’s grave «Leninsky», Second — Karl Marx, Third — Karl Liebknecht, Fourth — Epelyabov, Fifth — Khalturin. The whole building is called the «Lenin Tower».
L. Kosoy, the pioneer
N. S. Krylov
There are many monuments in the union, and all of them, like granites, are lifeless. And I see that they can create such a monument so that it is, a living monument, to the dead Ilyich … Read and maybe my peasant idea will be suitable for your great goals. My name to the monument is: «Dead Ilyich is a living monument» (for the great ways indicated by it, the workers and peasants, along which for centuries they have reached the kingdom of labor).
… A huge, round, granite boulder… At the edges there is a railway line, on which the electric train should go day and night… Around the line of the railway there is a not so smooth rise to the center in a height. I will divide the whole circle into five parts. 1-3 parts — a triangular cone, a tractor moves, plowed fields and a meadow are visible, the tractor goes around the field in a circle. Part two — New Village, houses with windows, poles with wires, cooperative, at nightfall, electric light in the windows. Third part and ½ of the fourth part, plant, pipes, wires, rolling trolleys with a working train. ½ of the fourth part and fifth part. There are mountains near the plant, a lot of mountains, a village is far up above, a trail over cliffs, from one mountain from above, over rocks, a stream flows, quickly, foaming, dropping to the foot of the railway, and the train goes and goes all around… In my opinion, a grandiose picture resembles Ilyich’s will — electrification — is obtained.
…Further over the entire structure, a square with railings for speakers at Party meetings. The middle is engaged in a pedestal… Ilyich is standing full length on it, he points to the sunrise with his hand, and from his legs a worker in a blouse and a peasant in an armyak gaze into the distance, in the direction of Ilyich’s hand. Ilyich looks at the worker and the peasant…
I turn to the underground (setting):
Worker, peasant, Red Army man and sailor — instead of four workers.
First entrance — into the crypt-rock, just under the falling stream, not reaching the monument, the dive into the ground begins, in steps. Wide central hall-crypt. Across the hall goes uneven rock, set the coffin of Ilyich, under the coffin in the rock is the wide mouth, for the passage of processions. On the rock climbing plants, various tropical trees… Everything taken together, in my opinion, should have the appearance of grottoes and rocks, a symbol of a fortress, the path that Ilyich created. Everything should speak exactly for what Ilyich created.
I. A. Romanov
The project of the monument to V.I. Lenin.
… to install in the center of the ball the ashes of the great leader (preferably his office is above the office with the Archive and the corner of the great leaders), if this is permissible, but I think everything is permissible in our RSFR (The Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic), and art paintings on the walls, shattered with the dust of the Great Leader. Make it. Boards with the letter HIS Covenants, silver boards in gold letters, create a globe firmly.
The NecroLeninist Counternational
(On the question of monuments against memory)
We were born in different places. They were already there — monuments to Lenin: they had grown into the territories of our birth, assembling places scattered in space-time into a no-name land. This land is free from the national code. Long before he was petrified in memory, Lenin argued that Marxism was irreconcilable with nationalism. For “Marxism puts internationalism in the place of all nationalism.” Today, this thesis needs to be revised. For with every verst of the gas pipeline, with every international office of Google, with every (international in its economic activities, and then in its ideas, in its aspirations) advertisement dollar, we see the merger of all nations into the highest unity — the global international writing machine. That is why we argue that the time has come to shift the motley internationalisms, which do not lose their armored-concrete connection with the compulsion to repressive nationalization, in favor of counter-national locality, that is, a non-codified tradition.
The question that concerns us now is following: what is the significance of the past in the world of experience? Moreover, how can we think of the past in separation from blood and soil, roots and bonds, bread and circuses, bar and code? As Adam Nevill rightly points out, “the past is everywhere.” We might add that we are talking about the unwritten past. The only lesson of history is that it is itself nothing more than a product of the scriptural economy produced in a factory in Neo-China. As long as the past escapes writing, it is always illegal. It is not in the heads of the leaders, not in their expired decrees and not on the hard drive, but in the joint movement along the line of tradition. And if false traditionalism carves memory out of stone, then plastic tradition opens a portal in the monument to the uncontrolled dark mausoleum of the past. The Lenin monument is both a psychochthonic portal and a geosocial assembler, but not in one person, but rather in a shared impersonality. We were born in different places — “and yet we are together.” Through the past. Against memory.
Everywhere Lenin goes down into the ground — he is drawn in and shrinks, contracts and bends: being screw into psychochthonic everyday-life in crooked circles of (necro)spontaneity, fermenting memory for (but not in the name of) the rupture: the vector into the future is broken by the youth of the margins; the invisible place and the undead leader are lurked by lichen, fertilized by birds, and populated with flora and fauna of sepulchral multiplicity, that is, sinking and swirling, submerging lower and winking with a question: to what kind of “identity” d’you want to stick your “for”? Against the left-reactionary obsession with identity, against Lenin-fall [Leninopad] and against queer-patriarchal-eco-colonial totalitarianism — for tradition as access to the ability to become different: during the excavations, no one’s past was found, infecting the imagination with the contents of the graves. “And gradually, in the murky and dark ether of outer space, they surfaced in the X-mind — those
images of the other…” 18 hours and 35 minutes. The pilot will remain circling over the specified area and on command will release homing missiles to cover their tracks. And so, having killed the tracks, we fell into the inner abyss…
Edward Serzhan, Denis Shalaginov
Kalyazin — Los’Angeles, Lenin 9, 2025