Georgi Chepilev: Formation of the Bulgarian Comics Genres in the Period 1890-1980 I

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 About the genre

The genre has a twofold form - in outward form and inward nature. Often, an external form or theme (eg only chronological plot difference) or idea, etc. is taken as a sign of the genre, but it is wrong because the substance of the content in the genre disappears. Therefore, the follow-up of the Bulgarian comic book development through a linear, chronological method in which the works and authors are presented in a row is incorrect, though somewhat useful.

Bulgaria is a crossroad

of cultures from East and West, as well as from different nations. From a chronological perspective, the history of Bulgarian comics looks like this: Rock drawings from prehistory in the Magura Cave; Greek Vase art, Thracian, Slavic and Proto-Bulgarian art; life icons and fresco cycles of religious art; satirical and entertaining comic strips in 20th-century newspapers and magazines; educational stories in children's editions.

Golden classic period for Bulgarian comics

Until 1890, no children's magazines were published in Bulgaria, after which the other extreme began, and at the beginning of World War II the specialized comic books for children and adolescents flourished. Here's how it get to them:

Graphics are capable of sealing the process of development, the running of time, and in two ways: by fixing the rapid and immediate impression and the development of the action, by changing several stages and points of view. The ability to capture and sharpen the characteristic, by rejecting anything superfluous, contains in itself the principle of close-up composition of comic art. The intrinsic logic behind the development of this principle pushed the artists to make whole series rather than individual drawings. These series are different from the lithographic series, in which the transition is from sheet to sheet or from situation to situation, because several pictures already develop one situation.

In issue 104 of 1942 of the first Bulgarian comic book "Chuden svyat" (“Wonderful World”) we read the following editorial message: "Chuden Svyat" has many other improvement projects that will raise it to the level of major European children's magazines ... ". In a short period of time, 15 Bulgarian comics have been published in a realistic tradition; 12 in caricatures and 1 unpublished work.

"Chuden svyat" is followed by other, also highly artistic comic books: "Iliustrovano chetivo" (“Illustrated reading”), "Romani v kartini" (“Novels in pictures”) , "Sedmichna zabava" (“Weekly fun”), "Pataran", etc.