Monday, 30 March 2009

Bishu street 3

This is quite rare - an old street name and house number plate with Soviet Latvia's coat of arms. And that's not all, it also states the name of the area - Lenin district. And for some reason even such information - the 10th squad of militsiya (USSR's police). This plate could be more than 30 years old.
Photo by (c) Arnis Balcus

Saturday, 28 March 2009

Glass bottle recycling...again

Here are again photos of two glass bottle recycling points in Riga. The third photo is just of an old Soviet informative plate of glass bottle recycling point that I discovered in some backyard. It should have stated the number of the shop, working hours, lunch break etc.
Photos by (c) Arnis Balcus

Thursday, 26 March 2009

Sports centre in Jugla

The Soviet era decorations and pictograms of a leisure centre in Jugla, Riga have been hidden by overgrown firs.
Photos by (c) Arnis Balcus

Wednesday, 25 March 2009

House of press

The house of press is one of the tallest buildings in Riga but it's left empty for already a couple of years and is awaiting demolition. The bottom floors are still occupied by some factory (most likely a printing house) and due to economical recession it might take a while until they need to vacate the space. In Soviet times the house hosted the most of Riga's newspapers and magazines.
Photos by (c) Arnis Balcus

Tuesday, 24 March 2009

Emergency numbers

An old plate in Latvian and Russian with numbers to call in case of emergency. Found on Žubīšu street in Āgenskalns district of Riga. The paint just below the street name covers its transcript in Russian.
Photo by (c) Arnis Balcus

Sunday, 22 March 2009

Savings bank

An old advert for the Soviet Union's savings bank can still be found just next to Āgenskalns market in Riga.
Photo by (c) Arnis Balcus

Wednesday, 18 March 2009

Video club

This is an old billboard for a video club that now is used to stick some private ads on Mārupes street in Riga. In the early 1990s such video clubs were common entertainment - in a room with a TV set, VHS player and a few rows of chairs people discovered foreign action movies and soft porn.
Photo by (c) Arnis Balcus

Monday, 16 March 2009

October bridge

At the bank of the river Daugava in Riga one can still find a symbol of hammer and sickle. In Soviet times also the nearby Stone bridge that was called October bridge at the time was fully decorated with these ornaments, however they were fully removed after the renovation in 1990s. Perhaps due to lack of money a short bay of these ornaments survived.
Photos by (c) Arnis Balcus

Saturday, 14 March 2009

Fire station

One can find quite a few relicts of the Soviet times at the fire station on Akmeņu street in Riga. For instance, a small petrol station and a few fire danger warning signs are absolutely rare objects in today's Latvia. Even such fire engines are hardly any left.
Photos by (c) Arnis Balcus

Friday, 13 March 2009

Computer freak

This psychodelic wall decoration can be found in the Institute of electronics and computer science in Riga.
Photo by (c) Arnis Balcus

Wednesday, 11 March 2009

Just like militsiya

Although this police sign is less than 20 years old the style of it resembles its predecessor - militsiya. Found in Purvciems, East Riga.
Photo by (c) Arnis Balcus

Monday, 9 March 2009

Institute of Polymer mechanics

The Institute of Polymer mechanics in Riga resides in a building that looks like a museum - with old curtains and wooden windows. On the outside one can find quite interesting decorations.
Photos by (c) Arnis Balcus

Sunday, 8 March 2009

Women's day

Even though the 8th of March is branded as International Women's day, today it still has very strong Soviet Union connotation. In the USSR it was not just about giving flowers and champagne to women but also about the Soviet Union's policy towards female rights. Although it is not an official holiday in modern Latvia, it is still widely celebrated.
The covers of the Soviet Latvia's woman magazine illustrate that there used to be times when women without make-up and fit shape could get on the cover of a magazine.

Saturday, 7 March 2009

Hammer and sickle

Although this emblem of hammer and sickle on a house on Brīvības street in Riga has been destroyed many years ago, the imprint of the Soviet symbol will remain there for good.
Photo by (c) Arnis Balcus

Thursday, 5 March 2009

Big dog

It seems that many years ago dogs used to be bigger. Such signs once were common but nowadays much smaller dogs have replaced them.
Photo by (c) Arnis Balcus

Wednesday, 4 March 2009

Museum piece

There's not that much left from the mural on Dzirnavu street that used to invite people to visit museums and exhibition halls in Riga.
Photo by (c) Arnis Balcus

Monday, 2 March 2009

Bright thoughts

This optimistic socialistic slogan that could be translated as "bright thoughts produce good works" still hangs on an old warehouse in the territory formerly occupied by the factory VEF in Riga.
Photo by (c) Arnis Balcus