How Joseph Langbard lived and worked

His name is known and revered by modern architects. From his sketches, the buildings of the Government House and the Bolshoi Opera and Ballet Theater grew on the streets of Minsk. Joseph Langbard did not follow the rules, but followed the dream.

The future architect was born in 1882 in the Grodno region, in Belsky district. From childhood, a little boy from a Jewish family was not interested in the fun of his peers. Instead of playing ball or swimming in the river, Joseph painted. He always had a pencil and paper in his hands, and hundreds of images and ideas were born in his head.

His father, a merchant, did not approve of his son's hobby and sent him to study in Odessa so that his son would follow in his footsteps.

Against the wishes of his father, Langbard entered the Odessa Art College in the architectural department. After successfully graduating, he moved to Petrograd (St. Petersburg) for further studies at the Academy of Arts at the Faculty of Architecture.

Joseph's teacher was an eminent Russian architect Alexander Pomerantsev, under whose leadership Langbard defended his graduation project and received Diploma in Architecture Higher Art School in 1904.

In the year of graduation from the academy, the First World War began, despite which Langbard continued to create and develop. At the front, the young architect was appointed head of the detachment for the construction of military fortifications. At this time, under his command were built Kostroma zemstvo council, theater of miniatures in St. Petersburg and agricultural museum.

In the post-war days, Langbard started working for a healthcare construction company and lived comfortably enough by the standards of the day.

Confident in his talent, the architect won the heart Olga Zakharova, a local telephone operator. She soon became his wife.

The career growth point in the life of the eminent architect was the 1930s. It was at this time that he made a significant contribution to the development of post-war architecture. After winning the competition for the best government house project - the main administrative building of the BSSR, Langbard's style became recognizable and revered. The construction of the Government House was carried out on Independence Square. After universal recognition, Joseph did not stop there and, taking advantage of the moment, continued to offer his projects. Soon he was entrusted with the creation of the main buildings of the central part of Minsk.

Project of the Government House, 1929

Building of the Government House, 1939

One of the grandiose buildings of Langbard was the building State Opera and Ballet Theatre.

opera and ballet theater in minsk

A little later, according to his project, House of the Red Army, today called the House of Officers.

The merits of the outstanding architect did not go unnoticed and in 1934 he was awarded the title Honored Worker of Arts and Architecture of the BSSR.

A special architectural style, different from all existing ones, fell in love not only with colleagues. Langbard was a supporter of the classics, he loved the simplicity and clarity of forms. Residents of Minsk expressed their admiration for the author's works, Yanka Kupala was among the enthusiastic fans. In the same years, according to Langbard's designs, the building of the Yanka Kupala Theater was reconstructed and elements of the main facade of the Academy of Sciences were built. Together with Mikhail Baklanov, the main concept of the building was developed Cinema "Victory" In Minsk.

Buildings were born in Mogilev thanks to the talent of the architect Drama theater and House of Soviets.

Leaving during the Second World War in the Yaroslavl region, Langbard continued to create. After waiting for the end of the war, he returned to Minsk and offered his services to rebuild the ruined capital. Joseph became the project manager for the reconstruction of residential and public buildings, as well as grandiose buildings of the pre-war period.

The creative path that Langbard has gone through can be called impressive. He is a worthy example of a person whose dreams and ideas were embodied in something unique and changed the vision of beauty in architecture.