The time has come around again for ARCHMoscow, Russia's answer to the English Ideal Home show, which runs until the 29th May. It brings together a trade show full of gold taps, shiny materials and novelty gadgets with displays by contemporary architects and designers; all spread across several floors of the Central House of Artists and is a great way to catch up on contemporary design trends here, both of the bling variety and of avant-garde tendencies.
The thing I still can't get used to is that many emerging designers seem to be making work that refers back very deliberately to the Soviet past - a little ironic, a little nostalgic, but also steeped in historical references rather than modernist ones. Post-modernism may have gone the way of all things elsewhere, but here it seems a very alive force, with many young architects insisting on directly reflecting both their pre-revolutionary and post-revolutionary heritage.
But whilst I don't understand this work (or even like it much) I think it is too easily dismissed or ignored by the rest of Europe. These are potentially truly new and inventive developments - circling around a kind of radical historicism - which is remaining invisible to international cultural debate, precisely because 'looking backwards' is currently completely out-of-fashion elsewhere.