187. Today in 1920s Turkey: 1 February 1926 (Always Dressing Up)

Illustration by İhap Hulusi (Görey), Akbaba, 1 February 1926, no. 330, page 2.

Haklı Şikayet
Kadın: Miskin… Giyinmekten başka bir şey bilmezsin!..

A Legitimate Complaint
Woman: (You) lazy (man)… you know of nothing but getting dressed!..

The complicated and often humorous relationships and lifestyles of the romantically involved comprises a common genre of cartoons in the 1920s. The present cartoon shows a simple contrast between two persons in a relationship, perhaps lovers or spouses. The woman criticizes the man for both being lazy and spending too much time getting dressed. The injustice being that the pouty woman is only wearing lingerie or a nightgown and therefore, is in no position to judge him. Likewise, dressed like that, she clearly intends to spend a lazy day at home, herself.

While the cartoon’s message is a bit muted, its significance to the field of modern graphic arts in Turkey lies in its artist, İhap Hulusi (later, “Görey”). His signature is found in the lower left corner of the illustration: it consists of a triangle with his name “İhap Hulusi” above, and the location “Istanbul” below it. He started his illustration career in the 1920s submitting works to newspapers and satirical gazettes in Istanbul. He even designed some advertisements as well. Some of his earliest works from the 1920s are discussed further in the below links. His career fully blossomed in the 1930s when he started designing advertisements for larger, state-wide commercial endeavors and government projects. His effortless, expressive graphic style made his works highly recognizable and conversely, his graphic line defined an era in early Republican visual culture and advertising.

Other “Today in 1920s Turkey” posts about İhap Hulusi’s work:

#44: Football Before Females

#70: His Master’s Voice Gramophones

#129: Youth Serum+Love= Warm Winters



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Yasemin Gencer

Yasemin Gencer

I am an independent scholar of Islamic art and civilization specializing in the history of Ottoman and modern Turkish art and print culture.