Yunost. Identity with the Soviet spirit

  • Yunost. Identity with the Soviet spirit

    The USSR handed down a magnificent cultural heritage to modern Russia. The walls of the old buildings are still breathing the proletariat spirit and radiating the masterpieces of the Soviet art and typography. Modern Russian design features a great trend of rethinking and preserving the Soviet time visual culture. Designers keep being inspired by the Soviet regime. This is especially true with regard to the urban environment and geobranding. It can never be easy to properly understand and reassess something that was created in quite another country, under another regime and ideology. Another challenge is to realize the value of old shabby signboard lettering and panel paintings with their cheerful Soviet mottos, which city dwellers see daily on the building walls.

    In 1965, an iconic 'Yunost' café was built on Metallurgov Av, in the Siberian city of Novokuznetsk. Its architects, Viktor Komar and Vadim Shkryado, aimed at creating something new and revolutionary, being inspired by Gagarin’s space flight. And on January, 10 of 1965, a huge doodled sign 'Yunost' (meaning youth) glittered with its neon light. The café became extremely popular with the residents, semi-legal 'stilyagi' (dandies) and young people in general. The orchestra played nothing but twist and rock’n’roll.

    40 years later, a shopping mall 'Yunost' was built instead of this dilapidated legend. The project aimed at developing the identity and exterior components, such as three panel paintings, an appropriate type composition for the façade, mall navigation concept, all with a reference to the image of the legendary Soviet café.
  • For the Soviet era characterized by large monumental Pano on the walls of buildings. Often they were carrying political propaganda idealized Soviet life, inspire confidence in the future. For walls backyard in collaboration with the artist Iv Orlov created illustration — Modern interpretation of Soviet dreams of an ideal youth. Pano promote an active lifestyle, culture and relationships of family values. These studies were the starting point of identity throughout the shopping center.
  • In order to decorate the façade showcases, a type composition was created as a part of a major project for the 'Yunost' shopping mall. Further developing the 'Soviet past' topic, we have recreated the lettering representative of the Soviet time, e.g. Sport, Motherland, Energy, Space, Future and other signs. Having begun as a specific task, the project has expanded into an independent identity movement and can exist as a separate branch of branded materials presentation.

  • Erohnovich Roma, art-direction, design 
    Pavel Saksin, design
    Elena Kowalski (Glenjan), lettering 
    Iv Orlov, illustration
    Max Malakhov, visualisation