Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Krokodil: Soviet Treasure









Krokodil was a Soviet satirical magazine which commenced publication in 1922. I found an enormous compendium of 1976 issues at the bookshop in Cook's Hill, Newcastle about six or seven years ago. That particular afternoon the shop was laden with old illustration and art books: I felt in luck but imagined that an old illustrator had died and that I had swooped upon his collection. Whatever the story was, the 5cm thick book was bursting at the seams and came with a carefully written explanation of what it was all about, in a previous generation's careful handwriting, above. And because I don't read cyrillic text either, any help that my slavic background could otherwise give me is useless. So if anyone out there is able and willing to translate some the captions for these, I'd appreciate it! (Mum?)

7 comments:

Alice said...

Maravilloso! siguen siendo increíblemente actuales las imágenes y con tanto humor!... mi favorito: la imagen número 7, de la mujer tejedora.... me identifica! jajaja. Felicitaciones por el tesoro que tienes... ojalá aparezca por ahí un traductor voluntario!

Sandra Eterovic said...

Thank you Alice -- I love her too. I chose a very feminine bunch actually -- someone else would have chosen large-eyebrowed Soviet politicians and soldiers. Very glad you like it!

helicopter6 said...

What an extraordinary find. I hope you've been able to encourage your mum to take on the project! Love that it was accompanied by hand written explanations. I'm sure whoever it was would be thrilled that they have landed in your hands.

Sandra Eterovic said...

Hello Helen!
I can't help but think that the previous owner is not with us anymore....I also know now that my mother musn't actually read my blog as she has not offered to take up the project! She and her beloved i-pad have better things to do -- like collecting recipes and playing with Tom the cat. ;)

I will get her onto it directly.

If Jane said...

i think i can help...

1 image: krokodil
2 image : krokodil
3 image: krokodil
4 image: Afrika
5 image: ??
6 image:
7 image: na robotu (working), sa robati (the work)
8 image: krokodil

i know cyrillic and a bit a russian...but...
hope this was helpful? ;)

Sandra Eterovic said...

Much appreciated If Jane!! Thank you.

St. Louisan said...

These are great! Granted, I'm late. I found a "Krokodil" from 1976 myself. Some help:
1. Says "daughters and mothers," I think.
2. Letter: "Dear sister, I am sending you a souvenir: your first photograph, with more to come. -Venus." The notecard says: "USSR Deep Space Communications," and is addressed from Venus to Earth.
3. "Our director pretends that the frost is far off and the repair can wait." His book: "Plan for repair of vegetable storage."
4. "You asked for my hand? Take it!"
5. Sign: "Not caught, not a thief"? This seems to be a typical Russian dacha (summer home) crammed with possibly stolen items.
6."Morning toilette of white women of South Africa." (This being the apartheid era, the woman shown is one of the oppressors.)
7. "To work... with work"? A pun, however it's translated.
8. The sign says "Recruitment of white mercenaries for Rhodesia." Easily forgotten, Rhodesia was an apartheid state before Mugabe took over. So Africa crops up again. (The text below says "Where is whiter?" - a reference to the bandages.

Many thanks to Google Translate!