Soviet bustops

In a totalitarian state you expect art and architecture to conform strictly to the ruling ideology like everything else, and that was true in the Soviet Union — with the notable exception of bus stops where creativity was not only allowed but encouraged.

Spread over its vast territory the result was a weird and quite numerous collection of esoteric structures that were more bizarre yet more artistic that those that have been created in the West — see the examples in earlier posts.

Canadian Christopher Herwig became fascinated by what he experienced on his travels and deliberately journeyed 30,000 km to photograph these surreal creations.

The result is a book that we were sent recently and makes for a fascinating study.  If you put his name into a search engine (we’re not going to use the ‘g” word) you will see more examples than the few here.

Apart from a handful in Wainuiomata and Eastbourne where artists have been at work on otherwise plain walls (see earlier), no such attention has been paid to bus stops in the Wellington region; the GWRC sees them as stock utilitarian structures only.

If this was done to a few stops in Waikanae to create part of its marketing “brand”, as we have suggested more than once, what icons would be appropriate?  A miniature of Beijing’s ‘Birds Nest’ stadium?  A big wave curving over about to break?  A sea shell?