An Enduring Grace by Michael Kirchoff

Issue 28

An Enduring Grace is an ongoing project based on my exploration of the cultural landscape of Russia, as well as its surrounding countries and former territories that have seen its continuing influence. The images are a fulfillment of distant childhood curiosities of Russia, then the Soviet Union, as a place very few Americans seemed to know much about. I remember watching black and white television in my room and seeing news reporters broadcasting from the center of Red Square in Moscow. That image of St. Basil’s Cathedral behind the reporter reminded me more of Disneyland rather than the evil empire of which he spoke. It was difficult to understand the contradiction between the harsh ideas Americans had of Russia and the whimsical nature of what I was seeing on television. I now satisfy my curiosity by traveling there, and capture these dramatic scenes with the same feeling of wide-eyed wonderment I had felt as a youth, mimicing the visions of my earliest ideas of Russia. I have been entirely caught up in the beauty and scope of this amazing land, and have been rewarded with a culture that preserves its heritage and landscape so dearly held by its people. An impressive thread of history runs through Russia that never seems to have been forgotten.

The framed and fractured photographs of An Enduring Grace are born from my childhood mind’s eye, and respect a land where the strength and character of its people are also reflected in the landscape, cathedrals, and memorials to its fallen soldiers.

Michael Kirchoff is a Los Angeles, California based artist.
To view more of Michael's work, please visit his website.

  Road to Red Square, Moscow, Russia 

Road to Red Square, Moscow, Russia 

  St. Michael’s Monastery, Kiev, Ukraine 

St. Michael’s Monastery, Kiev, Ukraine 

  Naval Cathedral. Kronstadt, Kotlin Island, Russia Cathedral and Windmill, Kizhi Island, Russia 

Naval Cathedral. Kronstadt, Kotlin Island, Russia Cathedral and Windmill, Kizhi Island, Russia 

  Cathedral and Windmill, Kizhi Island, Russia 

Cathedral and Windmill, Kizhi Island, Russia 

  Peter and Paul Cathedral, St. Petersburg, Russia 

Peter and Paul Cathedral, St. Petersburg, Russia 

  Giant Lenin Head, Ulan-Ude, Siberia 

Giant Lenin Head, Ulan-Ude, Siberia 

  Church on the Spilled Blood, St. Petersburg, Russia 

Church on the Spilled Blood, St. Petersburg, Russia 

  Fortress Turret, St. Petersburg, Russia 

Fortress Turret, St. Petersburg, Russia 

  Motherland Statue, Kiev, Ukraine 

Motherland Statue, Kiev, Ukraine 

  Tower and Transfiguration Cathedral, Kizhi Island, Russia 

Tower and Transfiguration Cathedral, Kizhi Island, Russia 

  The Black Tulip, Ekaterinburg, Russia 

The Black Tulip, Ekaterinburg, Russia 

  Bridge Lamp and Fortress, St. Petersburg, Russia 

Bridge Lamp and Fortress, St. Petersburg, Russia 

  Maarjamäe War Memorial, Tallinn, Estonia 

Maarjamäe War Memorial, Tallinn, Estonia 

  Wooden Fort, Irkutsk, Siberia 

Wooden Fort, Irkutsk, Siberia 

  Resurrection Gate, Moscow, Russia 

Resurrection Gate, Moscow, Russia 

  Uglich Lock, Uglich, Russia 

Uglich Lock, Uglich, Russia 

  GUM, Moscow, Russia 

GUM, Moscow, Russia 

  Kazan Cathedral, St. Petersburg, Russia 

Kazan Cathedral, St. Petersburg, Russia 

  Ukrainian Church, St. Petersburg, Russia 

Ukrainian Church, St. Petersburg, Russia 

  St. Isaac’s Gate, St. Petersburg, Russia 

St. Isaac’s Gate, St. Petersburg, Russia