The subways of Moscow and of Mexico City display some odd similarities. Both are packed with the symbols of failed revolutions and perform a clear compensatory function as “underground heavens.” Perhaps its not a coincidence that both were inaugurated one year after the crushing of dissident movements. The Moscow metro opened in 1935, a year after all Soviet artists’ and intellectuals’ organizations were disbanded and their members forced to regroup under a single state-controlled body; the Mexico City metro, opened in 1969, was the first major public work unveiled after the Tlatelolco student massacre of 1968. Totalitarian states create an “impossible,” atemporal zone to place lost freedoms.
Juan Villoro (via suburbanurbanite)