Warsaw Desk Blog

Real Women Don’t Wear Gloves #2

I wrote earlier about the rubble women who rebuilt Berlin after WW2. Warsaw also suffered from terrible labour shortages, and women were soon pressed into construction work. If you look closely at the motifs...

Warsaw. City of Dreams.

Zbyszko Siemaszko, photographer, architecture lover and Warsaw lover, lucked in to the perfect job. From the 50s through the 70s, he documented the rebuilding of Warsaw and the emerging Polish modernist school. Siemasko’s genius...

Across The Great Divide

Famous, Fall of The Wall photographer, Anthony Suau, went on to document the crash of the rouble and the implosion of Soviet society. Perhaps he was inspired by his first sortie East? Prior to...

Berlin’s Albert Memorial

I like Alberts cafe in Berlin. Though any connection with Einstein is tenuous to say the least. Alberts is next to the Kino on Karl Marx Allee and was, in Socialist times, the Mokka...

Ukrainians Invade Poland

In 2014, only 0.2% of the Polish population were immigrants. Politicians were more worried about losing plumbers to the UK. But now the debate is changing, driven by busloads of Ukrainians. It’s no longer...

Ready Steady Girls

Here’s a great link for Ostalgists: Ready Steady Girls  It’s a quick rundown of all the DDR pop divas of the Sixties and their greatest hits – or should we say, East Bloc Busters. Featured...

Wiki Lechs

I only just arrive in Poland and there’s a national scandal. Leaked documents show that Lech Walesa, the darling of Western ‘democracy assistance’, was in fact a paid informer for the Communists. Well, the...

St. Beatlesburg

There’s a cavern club in St. Petersburg called Liverpool. It’s a little shrine to the Beatles. The ‘Fab Four’ even appear in stained glass windows, though to see these to advantage you’ll need to...

A Short History of Soviet Rock’n’Roll

On Saturday Night Live, Wayne Campbell famously said: ‘the best thing about the collapse of the Soviet Union is that there would be ‘no more cheesy behind-the-iron-curtain metal bands like Gorky Park.’ Still the...

No Place For The Palast

  The Palast Der Republik was built in 1976 and demolished in 2008. When it opened, it was the largest multi-functional building in Europe, housing not only Parliament but also restaurants, galleries, theatres, exhibitions...