From the editors
CULTURE IN A "FOREIGN" SPACE: AN INTRODUCTION
TO GENIUS LOCI KALININGRAD AND KOENIGSBERG
KALININGRAD IN THE YEAR 2020 - A NOT QUITE FICTITIOUS CONVERSATION
DESTINATION - KALININGRAD
FROM KALININGRAD DICTIONARY
MAP OF THE CITY
FORMA URBIS. SYMBOLIC PARALLELS
IN OR OUT
THE RAILWAY STATION AND ENTRANCE TO THE CITY OF KALININGRAD
BINARY STATES OF "K" CITY
Eugeny Umansky, Karpenko-Karpenko
IN THE CENTER
Andrei Monastyrsky, Sabina Haensgen
EMPTY CENTER K.
FOLLOWING SILENT WORDS
FA+ (Ingrid Falk & Gustavo Aguerre)
THE MYTHICAL FOUNDATION OF KALININGRAD
PRETERITION: KNEIPHOF ISLAND
THE BRIDGES AND "THE PREGEL'S ODOR"
John Craig Freeman, Greg Ulmer
IMAGING KALININGRAD: THE SEVEN BRIGES OF KOENIGSBERG
FORGOTTEN KANT AND THE KANT-BRAND IN KOENIGSBERG
KANT'S BRIDES: A READYMADE PHOTOGRAPHIC CHRONOTOPE
THE CATHEDRAL AND KANT FOR EVERYONE, OR IS GOD FEARSOME WITHOUT MORAL
THE CASTLE OF SOVIETS
THE ROYAL CASTLE
A WHITE SEAGULL ABOVE THE CITY: THE SYMBOLS OF THE OLD NEW CITY
WRITING OF DREAMS
LIGHT UP DOM SOVETOV
THE HOUSE OF SOVIETS
THE MOST PROFOUND SECRET OF ONE KOENIGSBERG LAWYER: HOFFMANN
A LEGEND ABOUT FIVE LITTLE ULRICHEN AND FERRYMAN ANDRE
KOENIGSBERG-KALININGRAD. THE TASTE OF MARZIPAN
THE COUNTRY OF PENSIONERS - OR THE GERMANS
CONCRETE ELEMENTS OF KALININGRAD
THE UNDREAMED OF CITY
TOWN PLANNING MATHEMATICS
MOSKOVSKII PROSPECT & THE SHADOWS AROUND ALTSTADT
OUR TOWER Ivan Chechot
THE TOWER-REDAN "KRONPRINZ"
THE KRONPRINZ TOWER. Projects for the National Centre for Contemporary Arts by Students of the Institute for Theory and Design in Architecture (Braunschweig, Germany)
THE AMBER ROOM
BASTIONS IN DIAMONDS AND EMERALDS
THE HOUSE OF MACHINERY: THE RECONSTRACTION AND EXPLOITATION OF THE POPULATION
V.I.P. (Very Interesting Person)
PLACE OF EXECUTION
TRACES OF A VIRTUAL HISTORY IN A VERY REAL CITY
CHRIST THE SAVIOR CATHEDRAL
LIFE AND EGGS (A sketch about trams)
A STROLL THROUGH THE CENTER
IN THE FLOW: FOUNTAIN SEASON
WILD WEST OF RUSSIA
ANIMALS IN KALININGRAD AND A MOSAIC
KOENIGSBERG'S SPIRITUAL HERITAGE IN TONS, ITEMS AND SACKS. From the history of lost and found cultural heritage
WE ALL ARE GOING TO BE THERE
MONUMENT TO 1200 GUARDSMEN IN KALININGRAD
MATTER AND SPIRIT
FRAGMENT OF A SYMPHONY FOR SLOW READING: IVANOV AND HIS SURROUNDINGS
ATTIC OF RECOGNITION
MAN AND WOMAN
THE SMALL SCULPTURE "GIRL"
ON THE STREET
Igor Isaev, Dmitrii Demidenko
THE FIRE HYDRANT
Kalle Brolin, Kristina Muntzing
THE WATERFALL HERACLES' BOLT
V.I.P. (Very Interesting Person)
NATASHA POTERYASHINA. Inteview
TO BE IN THE MOOD FOR PACKING
Dmitrii Bulatov, Pavel Savel'ev
ACEPHALUS: OPTICAL MODELS
LIGHT THE CRYSTALS OF KALININGRAD!
THE BRIDGE THAT THE "RUSSIANS COULDN'T PULL DOWN"
THE ROAD TO BERLIN: FROM EPIC TO BANAL. Interview with Valerii Bugrov
HOAR-STONES AND BOUNDARY SYMBOLS
MUSCOVITES ARE HANGING
BEFORE THE CITY
Anatolii Bakhtin / Kaliningrad, Russia
The conception of the citizens of Kal-grad (Editor's note: this is the author's variant) of pre-war Koenigsberg as the pearl of the Baltic, the most beautiful city in Europe, is a slight exaggeration, to put it mildly. Koenigsberg used to be a modern German city, but despite its seven hundred year history it did not have as many interesting historical and architectural monuments as may be found in younger German cities.
The citizens of Koenigsberg had a very pragmatic attitude towards the architecture of the city. This may be clearly seen in the poor state of preservation of the medieval monuments by the start of the 20th century. The last medieval residential house on Hekergasse Street was demolished in 1910. In fact, only the Cathedral and two or three churches remained from the Middle Ages. Furthermore, the central facade of the Cathedral was rebuilt in 1907-1912 in such a way that it became almost unrecognizable - only its silhouette survived.
The Koenigsberg Castle, founded in 1255, was rebuilt many times and was not an integrated architectural ensemble unlike, for example, Marienburg (Malbork, Poland). It was attractive on the outside with its high tower (the upper part of which was rebuilt in the 19th century) and two strong round towers on the west side, but it looked quite ordinary from the inner yard. The southern wing was especially miserable, being a typical barracks building in which there was no room for architectural "extravagance." Almost the entire castle was plastered, something that did not add any historical character to its appearance.
Since Koenigsberg was encircled by rampart fortifications, the population growth within the city resulted in new problems. All empty sites within the ramparts were filled up with ugly residential houses. Between the ancient streets of Konigstrasse (Frunze Street) and Rossgarten (Klinicheskaya Street), Hintertragheim (Proletarskaya Street) and Steindamm (approximately Leninsky Propect, from the elevated bridge to Victory Square), in the areas of Zakheim (from Moskovsky Avenue to the Pregel River), Lomse (the big island from Oktyabrskaya Street), Haberberg (Bagrationa Street and Kalinina Avenue) grew new streets that meanced with their sameness. On Kneiphof an ugly grammar school was built next to the building of the old university, spoiling the view of the island from the north.
Before World War I several beautiful town houses were demolished, some facades were disfigured during their "modernization" and the establishment of shops in the semi-basements, and several pompous but ugly commercial and office buildings were constructed that did not fit into the general appearance of the 16th-18th century city streets. There were plenty of rental properties of the barracks type, with many outhouses in their courtyards. These were the drawbacks of the period of modernization. In 1906 the magistrate began buying up fortification buildings from the military authorities in order to enlarge the city. The first action the city administration took was to demolish the extremely beautiful Steindamm Gates. Next, the Tragheim Gates were pulled down. It was only due to the negative response of the public that the other gates were preserved.
After World War I this process continued. In the center of Altstadt, the most ancient part of the city, the first tall building (8 floors) in the Constructivist style was built in the area of the Altstadt Market. Many houses with flat roofs were constructed that somehow anticipated the Soviet Khrushchevkas of the 1960s. There were many such houses even on Kneiphof (Tsentral'nii Island, nicknamed Kant's Island). That is why the Kaliningradians' present conception that the city "had high tiled roofs" is false.
Indeed, in the 1920s and 1930s much construction was undertaken to make the city look modern.
Translation by N.Andreeva