This fascinating look at the end of tsarist Russia will delve into topics like the Civil War and the establishment of Bolshevik power.
“I’ll give a historical background to the remarkable artifacts and in particular focus on certain aspects of the history of the Soviet Union,” Breyfogle says. “We’ll look at Soviet history in the 20th century, at Russia and the Soviet Union in World War I, the socialist revolution and what life was like in the Soviet Union into World War II.”
Breyfogle, who contributed to the DACO exhibition, Russian Decorative Arts from the Tsars to the USSR, is an associate professor in the history department at The Ohio State University. He also serves as the director of the Goldberg Center for Excellence in Teaching at the university, has authored or edited nine books and is a magazine editor.
Despite his extensive research in Russian Soviet history and society, his love for this intriguing time in world history was a bit of an accident.
“My parents sent me on a school trip to the Soviet Union while it was still the Soviet Union in the mid-1980s, and that was one snowflake that created the avalanche,” he says. “I got so interested by what I saw there, that led to college and grad school. I got interested in how times began to change in the Soviet Union and then it collapsed. It was watching history unfold before one’s eyes. It remains a fascinating place to me.”
Helping to bring the exhibit curated by Michael Reese to DACO that focuses on this culture and time period brings many memories to life for Breyfogle.
“Michael’s collection is a pretty remarkable personal collection of items,” he says. “Eclectic and quite remarkable what he was able to pick up from the former Soviet world.”
During Breyfogle’s travels, he recalls spotting similar items.
“I remember these things being sold as people were trying to pay the bills, and to see it all together in an apartment in Victorian Village, it has been incredible to see and get to know him,” he says.
Through Breyfogle’s virtual historian talk, he hopes to help bring this visual and cultural story to another audience.
“It’s part of the work I do at the university in public history, bringing great stories from the past to as wide of an audience as I can,” he said.