Day 4: Sunday 7th of July

Day 4: Sunday 7th of July

An excursion day of constructivist sites, urban industrial heritages, Dutch music and too much food.

Water tower

After a long walking tour with Alexander yesterday, today we are lucky to have a comfortable big white bus to bring us around St Petersburg visiting more constructivist and industrial sites. Departing 11 am in the morning, our first stop is the water tower of Red Nailer Factory, which is located in the southwest of Vasilievsky Island. Built in 1930-1931, it is the only realized project of constructivist architect and graphic designer, Yakov Chernikhov. Located at the corner of the factory, the water tower creates an expressive perspective with the cylindrical form of water tank high in the air with thin supports.

Palace of Culture

After that, we visit the Kirov Palace of Culture. Constructed by renowned Soviet architect Noi Trotsky in 1931-1937, Kirov Palace of Culture is one of the largest pre-war constructions of Leningrad House of Culture. The building has a grandeur exterior appearance but the interior space is a relatively a mismatch with the exterior, which is in a rather deteriorating condition. However, we are still able to observe a lot of interesting interior detail elements of Soviet time. Today the building is occupied by dance groups and art classes.

Red Banner Factory

After visiting the Kirov Palace of Culture, we left the Vasilievsky Island and arrived at Petrogradsky district to visit the Red Banner Textile Factory, which was constructed between 1925 and 1927 by the German architect Erich Mendelsohn. This factory is one of the earliest examples of Modernist architecture in St. Petersburg and had a heavy influence on architecture in Soviet Russia. Guided by the representative of the property, we are able to have a throughout visit of the main production building that also house a small exhibition of the proposal by the architects Rüdiger Kramm and David Chipperfield, the dye works factory space and the power station. We are impressed by the interior space with unique light environment and the power station equipment that remains intact.

Ulitsa Tkachey

Our next stop is the Ulitsa Tkachey housing area, where we get the chance to have a glance of the constructivism urban planning idea of the housing complex. Our final destination of the bus excursion is the Mobahaus office, which is a reconstruction project of a Soviet old boiler-house building that was built in 1974. The visit starts with a nice rooftop coffee and food offered by the owner of the property. After that, he guides us through the building showing different parts of the building. We can see the idea of transparency and penetrability is implemented in the interior of the building where there are no windowless spaces or dead ends.

Go Back To The Zoo

After our last visit, we left the building around 4 pm and head back to the island, where we have ‘lunch’ again at the slow kitchen. Probably due to the tiredness after the extensive visit and too much food, the working and presentation session is postponed to the next day and we enjoy the rest of the evening on the island with nice music by the Dutch band.