The art reference collection covers fine and applied art from
Russia and the former Soviet Union. It is of interest to art historians,
theatre designers and publishers.
The range is wide - from general histories of Russian and Soviet
art to specific aspects of painting, sculpture, print-making and
the graphic arts, theatre design, icons, folk art, textiles and
ceramics. The Russian period is well represented with a substantial
section on icons, the 19th-century schools and monographs on individual
Russian artists. The Soviet period covers the avant-garde, socialist
realism and individual Soviet artists. In particular, there is
a strong section on the constructivists, some rare books by and
about designers, and excellent coverage of the Cold War years.
Titles are in Russian and English, predominantly from Soviet
publishers. The collection is supplemented by back issues of a
number of Soviet art and cultural magazines.
The architecture reference collection covers all aspects of architecture,
building and town planning in Russia from medieval times to the
20th century. It is an invaluable resource on the Russian and
Soviet period for architecture historians and researchers.
The collection holds over 500 reference titles, many illustrated
with extensive plans and architectural details, as well as photographs
and illustrations. The Russian period includes monographs on Russian
and Western architects to the Tsarist court, such as Bazhenov,
Cameron and Rastrelli. The Soviet period includes monographs on
figures such as the avant-garde designers Leonidov and Melnikov;
Alexei Shchusev, designer of the Lenin Mausoleum; and the 20th-century
theatre designers and architects Leonid, Victor and Alexander
Vesnin. There are also titles on the Soviet avant-garde period
donated by the late Dr Catherine Cooke.
The majority of titles in the main architecture collection are
Soviet publications in Russian or English. It is supplemented
by back issues of a number of Soviet architecture magazines. The
Huntly Carter Collection within
the photo library also provides an important visual resource on
avant-garde architecture in the 1920s-30s.
Two special archives enhance the collection - the Arthur Ling
Bequest and the SCR Architects and Planners Group Archive.
Arthur Ling Bequest
The Arthur Ling Bequest was received in 1995. Professor Ling was
a noted architect and town planner who chaired the Society's Architects
and Planners Group from 1985-91. His collection covers architecture
and town planning in both the Soviet Union and post-war Eastern
Europe. It includes many photographs taken on his travels in the
SCR Architects and Planners Group Archive
The Society also holds the archive of the Architects and Planners
Group (1945-91), whose members included such alumni as Sir Patrick
Abercrombie, Wells Coates, Erno Goldfinger, Bertold Lubetkin and
Sir Charles Reilly.