Khrushchev in America

On 15 September 1959, Nikita Khrushchev became the first Soviet leader to visit the United States. Over the course of 12 days, he travelled from Washington, DC to New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Jose (to witness the birth of the computer age at IBM’s headquarters), Des Moines and Coon Rapids in Iowa, and Pittsburgh, ending his whistle-stop tour in a summit with President … Continue reading Khrushchev in America

A Soviet Art Face-Off

60 years ago this month Nikita Khrushchev took over as leader of the Soviet Union. Stalin’s death on 5 March 1953 had unleashed a fierce power struggle amongst his deputies in the Politburo. The coup d’état that brought Khrushchev to power was at the expense of his main rival, Lavrentiy Beria, who was executed for treason in December. Khrushchev’s fighting spirit would lead him into … Continue reading A Soviet Art Face-Off

American Modernism Comes to Moscow

Several weeks after the Soviet Exhibition opened in New York, the reciprocal American Exhibition opened at Moscow’s Sokolniki Park on 25 July 1959. The art on display was in stark contrast to the heroic socialist realist paintings and sculptures shown in New York. Although American realism was represented in works by celebrated artists such as Andrew Wyeth, Thomas Hart Benton, John Steuart Curry and Edward … Continue reading American Modernism Comes to Moscow