The World Tree in Socialist Cosmology. Part III (of IV)

Bild 3.jpgCreated by Ivan Simakov (1877-1925), the Soviet poster from May Day 1921 is like a synthesis of Crane’s picture and the cover to Mother Earth.* The colours in Simakov’s image are bright and clear and dominated by red and green. The world tree has been cleaved into two; the one and only magnificent tree, an ash-tree perhaps, has been substituted by two common birches. Between these birches stand a male and a female peasant. In front of the sun they raise the hammer and the sickle. The sun is not rising; it is already high in the sky. The tree supports stabilize and signify order, but it is the sun – and industrial and agrarian labour – that is the guarantee for prosperity and happiness. The place for the incarnation of the non-place (u-topia) is apparently on Soviet soil.

* Reproducerade in David King (2009). Red star over Russia: a visual history of the Soviet Union from 1917 to the death of Stalin, p. 129.