Boris Iofan

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Iofan, Boris Mikhailovich


Born Apr. 16 (28), 1891, in Odessa. Soviet architect. People’s Architect of the USSR (1970). Became a member of the CPSU in 1926.

In 1916, Iofan graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in Rome, and in 1919, from the School of Engineering there. He was a member of the Italian Communist Party from 1921 to 1924. He began working in the USSR in 1924. In the spirit of constructivism he designed a complex of buildings (including an apartment house, the motion picture theater Udarnik, a department store, and a clubhouse) on Serafimovich Street in Moscow from 1928 to 1931. The clinical sanatorium that Iofan built in Barvikha near Moscow from 1931 to 1935 is distinguished by its rational layout and simple, functionally justified forms. Iofan’s designs also include the USSR pavilions at the Paris World’s Fair of 1937 (with sculptor V. I. Mukhina; Grand Prix; State Prize of the USSR, 1941) and at the New York World’s Fair of 1939 (with architect K. S. Alabian and sculptor V. A. Andreev).

In the postwar years Iofan built the complexes of the petroleum and mining institutes in Moscow from 1947 to 1950, designed the Central Institute of Physical Culture in Izmailovo (under construction in 1972), and supervised the construction of large housing projects in the Moscow districts of Izmailova and Mar’ina Roshcha from 1955 to 1966. Iofan participated in the planning of the Palace of the Soviets in Moscow (first prize, competition of 1931; participated in the competition of 1958). Iofan has been awarded the Order of Lenin, four other orders, and various medals.


Mel’nikov, E. “Boris Mikhailovich Iofan.” Arkhitektura SSSR, 1971, no.5, p. 39.
References in periodicals archive ?
In America, it is George Washington; in Russia, it is Lenin, depicted in Boris Iofan's project for Dvorets Sovetov (The Palace of Soviets), 1937-40, in which the enormous statue of the dead leader stands on top of an equally huge skyscraper.
Boris Iofan's monumental Soviet pavilion faced Albert Speer's even taller German pavilion, the Nazi eagle peering down on Vera Mujina's forward-striding Worker and Collective Farm Woman.