Princeton hosts exhibition chronicling Gorbachev leadership

A photography exhibition chronicling Mikhail Gorbachev's leadership of the former Soviet Union went on display in Frist Campus Center and Chancellor Green Monday and will run through Nov. 18.

Rebecca Matlock took the pictures when her husband, Jack Matlock, now a professor at the Institute for Advanced Study, served as ambassador to the Soviet Union from 1987 to 1991, Daily Princetonian reports.

Her position inside the embassy put her in a unique position to take pictures."I had it [a camera] with me in situations where I could make photographs that other people couldn't," Matlock said. "I make the journalists jealous."

One of Matlock's favorite photos that she took was of Boris Yeltsin when he was out of office. She took him to Spaso House, the residence of American ambassadors in Moscow. "Boris Yeltsin looked through the gallery and he looked at these different things and couldn't think of anything to say," she said.

Finally, she said, he found a bowl of flowers and stuck his face in it. She had the camera on her hip, and took a photo. He looked "a little bit like Ferdinand the Bull, he was kind of out of it in that way," she explained.

Matlock began to take photos in 1977. "[My husband and I] had this terrible fire in the embassy," she said. "We lived next door to it and it was really exciting to see all the helicopters fly over and take photos. I said to my husband, 'You know, I think it is time for me to start taking pictures.' "

The exhibits, which contain about 100 photos, include pictures of Gorbachev with Reagan and Gorbachev with former president George Bush. There are also about a dozen pictures of Gorbachev after he left power. A.M.

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Author`s name: Editorial Team