Gorgeous photos of Soviet subway stations

Photo of a Soviet subway station by Christopher Herwig

Christopher Herwig is a photographer who previously did a fantastic series of photos of Soviet-era bus stops.

Now he's back with a book of photos of Soviet subway stops -- and they are, if anything, even more mesmerizingly gorgeous. The USSR really went in for epic geometric patterns receding into the infinite distance. The book's available here, and his Instagram is here.

Some more photos of stops are below, but here's a bit from a Colossal post talking about how he got exposed to the subject:

Herwig explains that he became interested in the underground architecture of the stations while visiting Moscow and Tashkent. Because many of the metro stations were used as nuclear bomb shelters, they were considered military sites and photographing them was prohibited. “Although I likely could have gotten away with a few images I really wanted to do the series properly and cover all the cities in the former USSR with metro lines not just a few flashy ones in Moscow,” he told Colossal. “With restriction being lifted in many of the cities it meant I could have a go at it.”

Herwig’s images take viewers on a journey through the architectural and political influences of decades pasts. Soviet-era symbols, relief sculptures of significant events and figures, and displays of opulence cover every square meter of the well-maintained subterranean spaces. Often making early morning and late night trips into the stations, Herwig says that many of the otherwise busy hubs appear to be abandoned because of his goal to “use people with purpose and not to distract from the space and design of the stations.”

The pix ...

Photo of a Soviet subway station by Christopher Herwig

Photo of a Soviet subway station by Christopher Herwig

Photo of a Soviet subway station by Christopher Herwig

Photo of book "Soviet Metro Stations" by Christopher Herwig

(Photos used here by permission of Christopher Herwig / FUEL)