Soviet Leader. Lenin's mausoleum was designed by Alexei Shchusev in 1924, during a period in which the strength of the Russian Avant-Garde had not yet been decimated by Stalin's enforced return to heroic realism and conservative classicism. As a result, the founder of the Soviet state is blessed with a resting place that is a rare masterpiece of modern architectural simplicity. Faced with red granite (for Communism) and black labradorite (for mourning), the mausoleum is essentially a pyramid composed of cubes. When Stalin died (1953) his body was placed next to Lenin's. In 1956, at the 20th Party Congress, Khrushchev denounced Stalin's tyranny, and his body was removed and placed along the wall behind the mausoleum. As of 1999, Lenin lies still in his crystal casket, seemingly unaffected by the vast changes that have swept over Russia. Lenin's cadaver demands extensive maintenance to keep away that "not so fresh" feeling. A team of fifteen scientists regulates the tomb's humidity and temperature, and they perform minor restorations on his face and hands twice a week. Lenin also receives an annual moisturizing procedure, during which he gets soaked in a vat of chemical preservatives for a period of two months - closing the mausoleum in February and March.