The strangely beautiful Melnikov House was built in Moscow in 1929, and is an early-twentieth-century futurist blend of peasant construction and ultra-modern weirdness. Maverick architect Konstantin Melnikov built his home using rough bricks typically found in Russian peasant villages, but he also gave it a novel shape - two interlocking cylinders riddled with hexagonal windows that make the whole structure look oddly like two curled punchcards. More pictures after the break.
Here you can see the house being constructed in the late 1920s, and below what the front looked like when completed. It was one of the only private residences built in Soviet Era Moscow, and Melnikov tweaked Soviet authorities by engraving his name over the front entrance, highlighting the fact that it was a private residence that wasn't collectively owned by the "people". Though widely acknowledged to be a perfect example of Soviet avant-garde, the Melnikov House has fallen into ruins. Its windows were blasted out during World War II, forcing the family to relocate to its basement.
After Melnikov died in 1972, the ceiling had been leaking for a while and the floors had rotted out. Luckily, it seems that the building will at last become a museum, and reopen to the public after being spruced up. There's an article in the NY Times today about a Russian philanthropist who is providing some of the money for the Melnikov House restoration. Images from the World Monuments Fund in Britain.
Melnikov House [via The Twentieth Century Society]