Architecture at the End of the Earth: Photographing the Russian North
The Western Shore of the White Sea
This chapter begins with the southern coast of the Kola Peninsula in Murmansk Province at the far northwestern corner of the Russian Federation. The village of Varzuga has one of the most distinctive surviving examples of Russian wooden church architecture, the Church of the Dormition (1674), and the village itself is also a remarkable microcosm of life in the Russian North. From Varzuga the route proceeds to the western shore of the White Sea and down the coast to the town of Kem in the Republic of Karelia. In addition to its own landmarks, including the wooden Cathedral of the Dormition, Kem has longed served as a point of passage to the Solovetsky Archipelago, site of the monumental Solovetsky Monastery of the Transfiguration. The chapter concludes with the wooden churches of the Kondopoga region and the magnificent original ensemble of two churches and bell tower on the Island of Kizhi.