These historic concrete structures from the second World War are called spomeniks, a Slavic word for “monument”. Giant monuments that demand attention and exude power, the Spomeniks invade some of the most unassuming little towns in Eastern Europe. They can be found in Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Albania and Bulgaria.
1. Podgaric, Croatia, 2006. Photograph by: Jan Kempenaers
Spomeniks were built as memorials just after the second World War during communism in Eastern Europe. These concrete structures tore apart any set ideas of what monuments should look like in the traditional sense, and instead, were created to look like abstract art.
2. Kosmaj, Serbia, 2006. Photograph by: Jan Kempenaers
In present day they stand abandoned in some of the most isolated and uninhabited parts of Eastern Europe, but their alien-like appeal and mysterious grandiosity lives on in photography, books and publications, and articles.
4. Krusevo, Macedonia. Photograph by: Jan Kempenaers
Most of them are built from concrete and stone, while a select few are made in combination with metal. While all of them are abstract, they do resemble various life forms like flowers and crystals or inanimate objects like alien bases and futuristic stations of some sort.
5. Kozara, Bosnia and Herzegovina. Photograph by: Jan Kempenaers
If any of the parts of the world the spomeniks inhabit were to be developed and industrialized, they would make for beautiful beautifully compliment newly built buildings and urban areas as art. Some could be turned into platforms to sit on on a sunny afternoon, night-time lighting. Regardless of what their future is, their presence demands attention to this day.