CIAM 4 in Moscow

Preparation and Failure

Photomontage (attachment to a letter from 28 April, 1932
sent to Stalin by Giedion and van Eesteren).
Inscription: ‘Proposed plan for the Palace of the Soviets
compared to the pseudo-modernist architecture of supermarkets
and churches’).
gta Archiv / eth Zürich.

The paper deals with the dramatic story of the preparation for (and subsequent failure of) the 4th Congrès internationaux d’architecture moderne (CIAM) conference in Moscow. The offer to host the congress in Moscow was made in 1929, with the planned topic "Urban Organisation, Urban Construction, and Regional Planning". Had it taken place in 1930 or 1931, the planned congress would have had an enormous impact. It probably would have been able to counteract the split of the modern urban construction movement into two factions, with those in favour of reconstructing existing cities on the one hand and proponents of building brand new cities on the other.

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