Friday, November 08, 2013

Under the wall

A sort of fascinating look here at the post-Soviet murals of Kazakhstan.

Very like the abandoned monuments of Yugoslavia, both in their hierophantic style and their air of already-ancient desuetude.

What I find fascinating about these things is the monumental quality they share. The heroic figures, immense and grave, in their postures of struggle or triumph, seem to shrink the passerby like Caesar's colossus. I can't help but feel like a petty man staring up at the images on the walls, so very different from the sort of commercial imagery I'm familiar with. No happy smiles or enticement to buy this or that, just stern reminders that the paths of duty are hard and the rewards for service are more service.

It seems impossible that these images are mere decades old; they seem to me as remote and distant as the winged bulls on the walls of Sumer.

I wonder how the local people feel about them, living as they do under the impassive gaze of the icons on the walls?

(h/t to Ed at Gin and Tacos for the linkage)

No comments: