“Kosmic memories” reveals extraordinary architectures, veritable totems of the civilization of the future erected as so many signs of a possible elsewhere. It is not by chance that this science fiction universe was born between the end of the 1960s and the beginning of the 1980s, especially in the satellite and non-aligned countries of former Russia. First of all, the obsession with the cosmos and old tropism of the Russian imagination (Tsiolkovsky, Sputnik, Gagarin…) and with the rapprochement of the West, artistic creation frees itself from political dogmas. If all these buildings have different functions, commemorative, political, institutional, their forms testify to the same breath: the invention of a future imbued with science fiction. We can see the Prehistory of the Future with flying saucers, space stations, and a multitude of geometrical shapes from another planet. Built mostly in concrete and at the tops of stellar landscapes, a telluric power from elsewhere emerges from these monumental architectures. Their location, while often a place of memory, also coincides with dawn or dusk, with a lateral light that reinforces their strangeness. Brutalist, futuristic, utopian, mystical, esoteric beauty… between Tintin’s ‘Temple of the Sun’ and the monolith from ‘2001, Space Odyssey’, these sentinels embody the dream of a future that is always to come.
This article is reposted from TLmag 32, by Vincent Fournier.