Lviv: 1925-1939. Item #1563
24 separate issues. In original illustrated publisher’s wrappers. 20 issues feature wrapper design by the noted Ukrainian modernist artist Mykola Butovych (1895- 1961). 1 issue (#3 of 1934) features wrapper design by the famous Ukrainian modernist artist and illustrator Galina Mazepa-Koval’ (1910- 1995). 1 issue (#6 of 1935) features wrapper design by the Ukrainian artist and poet Svyatoslav Gordinsky (1906-1993). 2 issues feature photomontages (#3 of 1934, pp. 2-3; #7-8 of 1931, p. 7).
A collection of 24 issues printed between 1925 and 1935: #1 of 1925; #1, 5, 6, 9 of 1926; #1, 2, 5, 6, 7-8 of 1927; #3, 7-8 of 1928; #1,2,11,12 of 1929; #5, 7-8 of 1930; #6, 7-8 of1931; #1 of 1932; #3, 5 of 1934; #6 of 1935.
The condition of the issues varies from good (mostly) to near fine. The collection in total lacks 1 wrapper (#5 of 1934). Otherwise complete. Detailed description upon request.
A collection of 33 issues of one of the most famous and best illustrated Galician women’s magazines.
The roots of women’s press in Western Ukraine go back to the late 19th century, when the literary miscellanies Pershyi Vinok [i.e. The First Wreath] (1887) and Nasha dolia [i.e. Our Fate] (1893-1896) appeared as the precursors of women’s periodicals in Lviv (at the time part of Galicia). The first feminist journal, the semimonthly Meta, came out in 1908 and was published by the Circle of Ukrainian Women (Lviv). In the following years, the Galician press witnessed the emergence of few Ukrainian women’s magazines; however, it was not until the 1920s that with the expansion of women’s organizations in Western Ukraine the demand for women’s periodicals increased. Against the background, Ukrainian Folk Art association began publishing what would later become one of the most influential Ukrainian women’s periodicals in Galicia – Nova khata [i.e. The New Home].
The magazine was established on June 1, 1925, and was printed until the outbreak of WWII in 1939. During the first ten years, Nova khata served as a monthly periodical for women, which changed its frequency and became a semimonthly magazine in 1935. Among the founders of the periodical were some of the most influential Ukrainian women of the time: the founder of the Ukrainian Folk Art co-operative, Stefania Chizhovych (1901-1988), women’s activist Stefania Savitska (1891-1977), public figures Olga and Olena Kulchytskys, etc. During its existence, the magazine had three different editors: first Maria Gromnytska, from the end of 1926 - Maria Furtak-Derkach, and from 1930 until 1939 - Lydia Burachynska. The print-run of the magazine gradually increased from 2,000 to 5,000 copies, proving growing popularity of the periodical. Interestingly, the periodical was also available in Czechoslovakia, Romania, the USA, and Canada.
Nova khata was intended for ‘intelligent’ women and was published as a magazine for ‘nurturing home culture’. With a clear focus on fashion, the periodical featured articles on art history, ethnography, folk crafts, architecture, cosmetology, home décor, hygiene, housekeeping, cultural history, as well as biographies and memoirs of contemporary Ukrainian artists and writers, prose, poetry, etc. The contributors to the literary content of the magazine were the Ukrainian writers and public figures Melania Semaka-Nyzhankivska (1898-1973), Hilarion Sventsitsky (1876-1956), Ulyana Starosolska (1912-2011), Maria Furtak (1896-1972), Blyanka Baranova, M. Pavlenko, etc. On the pages of the periodical, the readers could find answers to such questions as how to sew clothes, how to preserve beauty and youth, how to keep up with the fashion trends, how to make canned food, how to decorate a house, etc. The magazine also included reviews of literary novelties, articles about women’s movement, materials about the workshops for the manufacture and decoration of clothing, excerpts from short stories, etc. Nova khata was among the first Ukrainian periodicals to create the idea of a new Ukrainian house in terms of its content, decoration, and focus on the traditions of Ukrainian culture.
One of the best illustrated Ukrainian magazines, Nova khata was distinguished with high artistic value and taste. The editors of the magazine set a goal to promote Ukrainian folk art – a tendency vividly exemplified in the design of the periodical. The covers of Nova khata were primarily decorated using vignettes of a stylized element from folk motifs and echoed themes from traditional Ukrainian folk art. The artwork of the magazine was mostly done by such famous Ukrainian artists as Olena Kulchytska, Svyatoslav Gordinsky, Galina Mazepa-Koval’, and Mykola Butovych. The latter was the leading contributor to the design of the wrappers. Interestingly, while the covers for most years were based on the elements of folk art, in the year of 1936, the editorial board chose to issue covers exclusively with photographs. Some of them were done by Yulian Dorosh, a Ukrainian photographer-artist and pioneer of Ukrainian cinema in Galicia. Nova khata included both photographs and drawings depicting famous Ukrainian public figures, women from different spheres of work, clothing samples, models, explanatory sketches to DIYs, national embroidery, etc. While the covers of the magazine were in color, the content was published in black-and-white. Photomontage technique was used occasionally (#3 of 1934, pp. 2-3; #7-8 of 1931, p. 7). It is important to note that in 1933, the magazine was awarded a prize for its artistic design and well-chosen content at an exhibition of illustrated magazines in Prague.
The magazine also featured interesting advertisements that provide a rare insight into life in Galicia at the time. Among the ads are advertisements of shoe polish, nivea cream, ‘Nova khata’ store of old carpets and rugs, a warehouse ‘Izmaragd’, which provided a service of borrowing books, a shop ‘U.N.A.M’ for sewing materials, a glass workshop, etc. This type of information is particularly interesting considering that neither of those small businesses has reached our times.
Overall, an extremely rare collection of one of the most influential and popular Ukrainian womens’ magazines.