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East Village’s fallen Vladimir Lenin statue rises on the Lower East Side

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The statue of the Soviet leader presided over East Houston rental building Red Square for two decades

Lenin on top of 178 Norfolk Street.
Bowery Boogie

The fallen East Village statue of communist leader Vladimir Lenin has found a new home on the Lower East Side. The quirky, 18-foot statue of the former Soviet leader has risen on top of 178 Norfolk Street. The news was first reported by EV Grieve, and later by Bowery Boogie.

The statue presided over East Village rental building Red Square for two decades before being removed in September 2016, when the 130-apartment building on Houston between avenues A and B reportedly sold to developer Dermot Company for $100 million. After falling on East Houston, the statue was moved to the roof of 178 Norfolk where it awaited a new plinth before being hoisted to its full height on Friday afternoon. Lenin’s new home is owned by the developer of Red Square, Michael Rosen.

The story of the statue is an unusual one: It was originally commissioned by the U.S.S.R., but the socialist state's dismantling in 1989 prohibited it from going on display overseas. Red Square, built in that same year, proved a suitable home. Bowery Boogie says Red Square developers Michael Rosen and Michael Shaoul “reportedly found it trashed in a backyard just outside Moscow and installed it five years later” in 1994.

Lenin at his original perch on Red Square.
Max Touhey