From «Zenit» to «Rassvet»

Minsk resident collected more than 1000 Soviet photo cameras

In the collection of Minsker are 1000 Soviet photo cameras

In order to complete his collection, Victor Suglob bribed shop assistants by means of chocolates, talked with resellers and even visited to a secret factory. Extreme for him (the photographer and collector of cameras) in life not to take. The correspondent of «R» decided to find out how and why the Belarusian began to «hunt» for the imaging equipment.

Dream for 67 rubles

I pass into the working office of Victor Suglob and find myself like in a museum: for perimeter around the room cupboards with cameras are placed.

— That’s not all, shows collector. Part of the equipment is in the museum gallery «World photo», the other I gave to the Museum of History of the city of Minsk. When in 1972 I bought my first «Zenit», never thought that one-day I will gather as many photo cameras.

Then Victor Suglob studied in the Gomel State University named Scorina at the Faculty of Physical Education. In the seventies, to meet in the Gomel trade counter reflex photo camera was considered a great success. Those who catch it by the tail could not be, negotiated with the workers stores.

I promised the seller any number of chocolates, only that she reserved for me «Zenit», says Viktor. After a month or two girl called. Money to buy  67 rubles were. Another summer I have earned them in a construction team.

Later hobby grew into a labor of love: when Suglob threw sports, he took up photography.

One day I met a Frenchman who wrote a book about the Soviet cameras, the interlocutor recollect. And I felt a little sad: foreigners are interested in our technique, and we no. And I decided to put together my own collection. I gave the announcement in Belarusian, Russian and Ukrainian newspaper. And then it began. People were calling from everywhere. In general, unfortunately, they offered only a very common at the time model FED.

One Thousand and One «Noch»

After the collapse of the USSR cameras out of the country have become massively exported to Poland and Germany... In order not to miss the rare models, Suglob asked middlemen before going abroad to bring their goods to him.

Viktor goes to the cupboard.

Here is the oldest exemplar of the collection «Fotokor», the interlocutor demonstrates. In the USSR, their production began in 1930.

Most photo cameras produced in the Soviet Union a copy of the Western. The same «Fotokor» is the repetition of the German «Zeiss».

Exception is «Sport», shows Suglob. Them began to produce in Leningrad even before the war. This is the first in the USSR single-lens reflex 35mm photo camera. A total there are six in my collection. The most valuable at number 29, it means that he came down the assembly line 29th.

Minsker has and rare photo cameras, which made ​​in Belorussia. It’s «Optics» designer himself gave it to collector, «Rassvet», which are the world`s only 15.

We move on to the next cabinet a special. Here are models of special equipment.

Before the collapse of the Soviet Union to find somewhere photo cameras of security officers was impossible, says the collector. They took as the apple of his eye. But after the Soviet Union they appeared on the market.

The first in the collection of Victor Suglob got a camera F-21 or «Ajax-12». Ladies discreetly hidden its in a handbag, and men in a folder.

Special equipment has a very interesting name, «Noch», «Zasada», «Kniga», «Barsetka», shows the collector. For example, this is the «Cinema Camera». However, the cinema camera in this case is only the moulage, which incorporates a photo camera.

Victor Suglob can talk for hours about his collection. He finds interesting elements even in ordinary photo cameras. In 2009, he published the book «1200 cameras from the USSR». Outside interest became for him a profession and life. After all, every photo camera has not only its fate, but in each of them have a history of a great country.

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