HERITO, No. 37-38: Magical socialist realism?

Socialist in content and national in form – these were required features of art and architecture made under the doctrine of socialist realism. Today, in Central Europe, the relics of socialist realism evoke unambiguously negative connotations. Fifty years on, are we able to look at them without these emotions? Which works have stood the test of time? Magical socialist realism – a joke or a hypothesis?

The new issue of “Herito” brings more than 160 photos and fourteen texts on architecture, literature, and the arts. Authors present a subjective atlas of socialist realist architecture in Central Europe, recall the history of the construction of the famous Marszałkowska Housing District, and discuss iconic works of Bohdan Pniewski – one of the most elusive figures of postwar architecture. They also examine the first Polish socialist realist building listed as a historical monument, wander to Krakow’s Nowa Huta district, to Poruba in Ostrava, to Eisenhüttenstadt and Prievidza, and search for forgotten socialist monuments in the countries of former Yugoslavia. Moreover, they investigate the Soviet orientalism, the rhetoric of socialist optimism, and contemplate the cosmos together with socialist artists.

The issue features texts and essays by Greg Castillo, Bohdan Cherkes, Beata Chomątowska, Łukasz Galusek, Anna Łazar, Karol Kurnicki, Lidia Pańków, Grzegorz Piątek, Anna Syska, Katarzyna Trzeciak, Miłosz Waligórski, Michał Wiśniewski, Aleksandra Wojtaszek, Marcin Zgliński, as well as reviews of recommended Central European publications.

Launch date: 4 March 2020

    • 1
      Editorial

    • 4
      Worth a Look

    • 12
      What if socialist realism is not over?— Łukasz Galusek talks to professor Bohdan Cherkes

    • 24
      National in form, socialist in content. A subjective atlas — ŁUKASZ GALUSEK

    • 68
      Star attraction of the first Two‑Year Plan — LIDIA PAŃKÓW

    • 88
      Bohdan Pniewski. Servant or master? — GRZEGORZ PIĄTEK

    • 106
      Fantastic socialist realism — ANNA SYSKA

    • 122
      Monuments of the era — BEATA CHOMĄTOWSKA

    • 134
      The mantle of national decorations — MICHAŁ WIŚNIEWSKI

    • 152
      Nostalgias, utopias and quagmires. About the reception of socialist realism in Ukraine — ANNA ŁAZAR

    • 164
      Partisan of marble. The forgotten Yugoslav socialist realism — ALEKSANDRA WOJTASZEK

    • 176
      Soviet orientalism — GREG CASTILLO

    • 206
      Four social realist paintings — MARCIN ZGLIŃSKI

    • 214
      The literature of cruel optimism — MARCIN ZGLIŃSKI

    • 224
      Concrete, the future, and socialism. Owen Hatherley on European and Soviet cities — KAROL KURNICKI

    • 236
      Fracture — MIŁOSZ WALIGÓRSKI

    • 246
      Worth a thought