Surviving Communist Era Public Art

this is a mural from on one of the government buildings in Bajram Curri. it contains all the best of communism: workers, the star, soldiers, women, folk music

Ive always found the idealism of communism expressed thru art to be inspiring, somehow much more inspiring than propaganda produced by liberal democracies. Perhaps its communism’s clear vision of how an ideal society should be that resonates with me. Obviously, communism and socialism as practiced by eastern Europe was a long term failure, but that doesn’t mean we cant appreciate what little good it left behind.

here is part 1 of the photos Ive been taking since Ive been here to try to document what remains of Albania’s communist public art in 2012.

veterans cemetery in Librazhd

veterans cemetery in Kukes

war memorial in Shkoder

war memorial in Vuno. this lists those who died in world war 2 from the village which is now largely abandoned. These are very common along road sides. “Glory to the martyrs of the village Vuno”

an old communist statue in Lezhe. Its not uncommon to see statues of workers, such as miners or oil workers.

a pretty awesome piece for the radio station in kukes. you can see the communist star radiates out like radio waves. also you see the gun and the pick-axe near the star, because everyone was both a soldier and a worker

above Librazhd near Elbasan, a boy sits on one of the 750000 concrete bunkers scattered across Albania. they were built because Albania had no friends after the dictator successfully isolated himself from the world, including the fellow communist world.

Tirana, the capital city. designed by the former dictator’s son in law, this first served as a museum dedicated to how great the dictator was. It is now abandoned and serves as a fun thing to climb.

an urban bunker in Fier, a rare sight.


5 responses to “Surviving Communist Era Public Art

  1. This is an awesome collage of Albanian communism! For real tho, I don’t think I can “like” it enough. I hope you don’t mind if I share it with all my friends back home…I feel like you captured something I’ve been trying to describe for so long. Mad props 🙂

  2. Pingback: A visit to the National Gallery of Art in Tirana | Dude, Where's My Gomar?·

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