The Tale of Two Projects: The New Trends of Post/Counter Consumption in Russia – Visual Case Study of Yuri Voicehovsky–Katchalov Estate Project in the Vologda Region and the Ugory Environmental Project in the Kostroma Region

Tuesday, July 15, 2014: 8:45 AM
Room: 417
Oral Presentation
Nikita POKROVSKY , General Sociology, Higher School of Economics, Moscow, Russia

The modern Russian history provides examples and trends in the evolution of consumption among the upper and middle class. Trend, tentatively called the "Abramovich's case" is still showing examples of Byzantine luxury. A new trend is characterized by the removal of (a) the demonstrative signs of wealth, (b) the desire to transform it into humanitarian programs. The paper analyzes the visual indicators of the "Manor Khvalevskoe" – restored by the famous financier Yuri Voicehovsky-Kachalov ("Standard Bank"), the family estate of the 19th century in the Vologda Region in northern Russia. The visual analysis demonstrates social implications of the concept laid in the foundation of this project and its manifest/latent consequences including those of architectural design preferences of the 19th century and today. The second case, the Ugory Project in the Kostroma Region in the Near North of Russia, demonstrates an evidence of cellular globalization which refers to the emergence of internalized changes within the individual attributable to the effects of globalization including the preservation of the old traditional architectural style of log houses. This process is slowly changing traditional rural attitudes towards wealth—more rural residents are placing greater importance on wealth than in the past. But the most advanced villagers already realize the significance and value of the ‘old style’ living. A new migration force is about to radically change the profile of local community life but tends to preserve diverse ‘indicators’ of old times. The dramatic crisis of urban life enables sizeable groups of middle-class professionals and IT-experts to consider moving to environmentally balanced areas in the North of Russia.