ASMP — American Society of Media Photographers

Gagarin

By April 11, 2019Current News

Screenshot of article posted on LensCultureCross-posted from LensCulture
[by Sophie Wright]

On the 12th of April, 1961, Yuri Gagarin became the first person to fly to space. The Soviet cosmonaut made history, orbiting the earth aboard the Vostok 1 on a 108-minute adventure. A milestone in the Space Race between the United States and Soviet Union, Gagarin became a cult figure and a shining personification of Soviet achievement. The famous figure’s life was tragically cut short when his plane crashed in 1968 during a routine training flight, but his legacy has passed through generations, and his memory continues to fiercely burn bright. Following his death, his hometown of Gzhatsk was renamed Gagarin, and monuments, memorials—and even a museum—sprouted in his honor…

In this interview, Garnik speaks about her own relationship with Gagarin, his enduring image in post-Soviet collective memory, and encountering the oddities of Gagarin—a town frozen in nostalgia.

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