r85: a series of 85 characters
Each of the characters represents one of the 85 regions of Russia through a combination of a head of an animal native to the area and regional attributes. My goal is to research the cultural, social and industrial diversity of the world’s largest country.


The first of the characters is the Volgograd (former Stalingrad) sturgeon fish. It features a uniform inspired by the Cossack style, and a necklace of black caviar, a delicatessen abundant in the area. The sword in the right hand is a reference to the great monument of The Motherland, the symbol of Volgograd. Finally, the sturgeon carries the smoking pipes behind its back, as a representation of the numerous factories of the city.

The second of the 85 characters is the St.Petersburg siskin bird. It is wearing a combination of a skirt inspired by Catherine the Great, and a leather jacket iconic to the city’s rock culture. The ballerina shoes symbolize St. Petersburg’s significance as the cradle of Russian ballet. The Siskin is holding an anchor which serves as a tribute to the Big sea port of St. Petersburg. Finally, the siskin bird (Chizhik-Pyzhik) is a well-known character of a little poem, which refers to students of the Imperial School of Jurisprudence. Their yellow and green uniforms resembled the colors of the siskin bird. I have chosen those colors for my character as well.



The third character of the series is the Yamalo-Nenets reindeer. It wears a warm fur coat decorated with traditional Nenets patterns and embroidery. The reindeer holds a polar shaman drum and has colorful ribbons and magical bells attached to it’s antlers. Large fur boots protect the reindeer’s feet from ice and cold while it celebrates the rising of the Northern sun.
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