A guide to the New East
Photography

Fatal attraction: step inside the Lithuanian bunker where you can relive Soviet terrors

Share on LinkedIn Share via Email

British photographer Barry Falk has travelled across Lithuania exploring traces of collective amnesia and trauma. The journey has taken him from various memorial sites into the country’s forests, the site of countless wartime atrocities. Yet an ex-Soviet bunker outside of Nemenčinė offers a different experience of the past. Built between 1983 and 1985 as a telecommunications centre during the Soviet occupation of Lithuania, the bunker has now been repurposed as a “live history” attraction where actors dressed as KGB guards are hired to terrify the audience. “The purpose of the re-enactment is educational: colleges send students to learn from the experience; businesses also send employees here for recreation,” the photographer learned on his visit to the bunker last autumn. Falk documents the bunker's interiors which have been decorated with Soviet paraphernalia collected from local markets. As Falk describes it: “The effect is eerie: the uncanny reality of the Soviet regime enhanced by the mould growing on the furniture and the sense of being lost in an absurd system.”

More from Photography

No Silence

Growing up LGBTQ in the forgotten world of Transnistria

Tashkent in your twenties

Inside Uzbekistan’s hidden party scene

On thin ice

We rode a delivery truck 730 km along a frozen Siberian river

Cryonics in Russia

Photographing the people seeking eternal life

Living museums

Discover central Europe’s grand communist interiors

2017 on Instagram

Travel the New East with our round-up of this year’s most captivating photos

Comments