Friday, February 19, 2010

Under the Umbrella - 1942

Apart from the bizarre weather of last week, when it snowed in Rome for the first time in 24 years, this winter has been one of the wettest for years. In fact, I woke up this morning to the sound of rain, so I thought this 1942 Italian rainy day postcard issued by Milanese publishing giant Cecami would be a good choice today! The child is wondering from whence the big rain drop is coming even though he is under a big umbrella - “Donde viene il gocciolone, Se son sotto all'ombrellone”!

The postcard is uncirculated, but on the reverse the issue date is clearly marked as Luglio (July) 1942 and it bears the distinctive Cecami logo which is still in use today. I'm not usually a big fan of the overly cute in vintage postcards, but this card has such a beautiful range of colours and printing finish that I couldn't resist it. The printed area has a matte finish with a slight dull sheen if tilted to the light and the details of the crayoned drawing make it almost appear hand-drawn at very first glance, which makes me think some kind of lithographic printing method was used.

Whilst the initials M.M. - the only clue to the illustrator behind this artist signed postcard - appear on many Italian comic or humorous postcards of those years, I've been unable to discover anything more about the artist. I imagine that he or she probably worked in-house for Cecami – as always, if anybody has any further information then do drop me a line in the comments below.

Find more vintage postcards at Marie's Cpaphil Vintage Postcard Blog and join other collectors on Postcard Friendship Friday.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Yuri Gagarin and Gina Lollobrigida – issued 1969

Last summer I was lucky enough to attend the opening of a photography exhibition of work by none other than the Italian actress and authentic living legend Gina Lollobrigida who has been a keen photographer for many, many years. I remember noticing a photograph that she had taken of Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin, so I was particularly pleased to come across this 1969 postcard of the two of them together - the Italian diva's camera is prominent in the foreground of the image!

This vintage uncirculated postcard was issued as part of a pack of 25 souvenir cards illustrating moments in the life of Yuri Alexeyevich Gagarin in the year following his premature death at only 34 after his pane crashed during a routine training flight. On 12 April 1961, he had became the first man to travel in outer space and the first to orbit the Earth. Appropriately, the name of the Moscow postcard publisher in the Soviet Union translates as “Planet” (Disclaimer: I'm putting all my faith in the results of Google translate here!) The postcards are printed, rather than real photographs, but the entire pack is still a lovely item.

I actually had lots of fun with this card when I discovered a website which allows one to type Russian letters without a Russian keyboard - using this website combined with Google translate I roughly mananged to get the gist of the blurb on the back of the card:

A man who had been in Space! What's it like? Hundreds of thousands of people wanting to shake his hand, to say a kind word ... Yuri Gagarin, and the Italian actress Gina Lollobrigida. 

If any of you read Russian please feel free to correct this translation in the comments below!


And whilst we're remembering Yuri Gagarin, here's a great montage of images - look out for Gina Lollobrigida again! Click here to go to YouTube or watch below:

Find more vintage postcards at Marie's Cpaphil Vintage Postcard Blog and join other collectors on Postcard Friendship Friday.