Moscow: GIKhL, 1931. 64 pp.: ill. 18,5x13 cm. In original illustrated wrappers. Restored, some creases, otherwise very good.
First edition. Very rare.
This is one of the well-known Soviet photobooks and one of the earliest literary works on triumphal projects of the First Five-Year Plan. The poem by Alexander Bezymensky (1898-1973) was devoted to construction of Dnieper Hydroelectric Station by architects Vesniny. The finished dam considered the victory of mankind over nature (the rapids were inundated making the ship route easier). At the same time that was the tragedy begun from the destroyed river banks - a shot of blasting work was chosen for the cover.
This started a visual account of this book. The layout by Solomon Telingater shows uneven lines of poems connecting with the harsh process of construction. The text pages are supplemented with six photographs resembling stills from a documentary film. They were produced by the well-known photographers of that time Boris Ignatovich, Feodor Kislov, Mikhail Makhalov. The last picture was made by Telingater who experimented in photo graphics: ‘it was made using two negatives, one of them printed as a positive, so that the black becomes white’ (Mikhail Karasik).
Worldcat shows the only copy located in Harvard College.