Name, first nameGaytandjiev, NikolaYear of birth1994eMailnikola.firstname.lastname@example.orgUniversityECALField of Interest / research fieldProduct / Object DesignTitle of projectIron Curtain ObjectsAbstractAfter the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, the world’s view of the USSR and the Eastern Block was one of total failure. A failed system, politically and economically, especially in the shadow of the USA and its prosperity.
Indeed, the USSR was a drastically different place from the west. The environment was extremely restricted, shortages of goods was a common problem and freedom of expression was looked down upon. The effect of this on design was profound. In fact, the word ‘design’ was seen as a bad word, as well as the activity of designing itself. Instead, designers were called ‘artistic engineers’ thus making them anonymous in the large machine of the USSR.
However, it is a common misconception that the USSR did not produce anything useful or of good quality. In fact, there was a huge number of designs which were conceived and showed a different standpoint on product design which took into account the status quo of the time. Some of these objects are no longer relevant in a changing world, but they show that even in a strict, suppressive and de-humanising environment as was in the Eastern Block between the 1930s and 1991, interesting objects came to life which in themselves are a time capsule of daily and professional life at the time. This memoire takes a look into case studies of everyday objects of the USSR to investigate how different settings and environments can make objects different.TutorsAnniina KoivuFileDownload file