ARCHIVES 2016

ALL ROADS LEAD TO ...GABROVO - WORKS FROM THE HUMOUR OF THE PEOPLES ART COLLECTION
Cartoons
/October 23 - November 23, 2016, Florian Josuf Hall, District Centre for Preservationa and Promotion of Cultural Heritage, Tr. Jiu, Gorj, Romania/

The selected collection features 20 cartoons by 14 artists from 7 countries, and ranks among the Golden Collections of the Museum HOUSE OF HUMOUR AND SATIRE. The works are a sentimental reference to the span of 44 years over which artists from the world over have made Gabrovo and the museum a tiny part of their lives - most frequently as entrants in the International Biennial of Humour and Satire in the Arts or in thematic national and regional cartoon competitions, or as artists staging solo shows at the House, as well as simply as visitors to the town at the time of the Gabrovo carnival.

The cartoons on show abound in original ideas and imagery. For some, Gabrovo is the birthplace of the father of Dilma Rousseff, the former President of Brazil, who is in a hurry to visit the town of her roots; for others, the way to Gabrovo is known even to the clouds - as long as one follows their wake; for third, the road signs to Brussels may be confusing, but not to Gabrovo; some artists even depict the House of Humour and Satire as a classic heroine on a pedestal surrounded by adoring 'troubadours' who happen to be none other but representatives of Bulgarian and foreign humour periodicals.

The exhibition encompasses both cartoons from the first Biennial in 1973 and the latest 40th-anniversary graphic greetings that have reached the museum; however, whatever interpretation of the subject matter the works display, one thing is indisputable - the bond with the House of Humour and Satire and Gabrovo is strong and everlasting. It is the message and the heritage left by generations of cartoonists to those coming after them.

CARICATOURISTS - WORKS FROM THE HUMOUR OF THE PEOPLES ART COLLECTION
Cartoons
/September 15 - October 31, 2016, Acad. Dechko Uzunov National High School of Plastic Arts and Design, Kazanlak/

The exhibition Caricatourists is again on road, this time as an item on the special programme celebrating the 25th anniversary of CENTAL BALKAN National Park. For more than two years running it has been touring the embassies of the Republic of Bulgaria abroad with the kind assistance of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The tour of Bulgaria was made possible thanks to the cooperation of the National Park. The exhibition will celebrate school opening-day in Bulgartia at the National High School of Plastic Arts and Design in the town of Kazanlak.

Caricatourists looks upon one of the most pressing and acute issues of modern society - that of the protection of environment. The 22 works on show (only part of the original collection comprising 79 cartoons by 65 artists from 21 countries) urgently appeal to the people all over the world to take better care of the natural riches, but they also warn that any thoughtless attitude to the environment inevitably leads to dramatic consequences.

GABROVO: CAN FUNNY AND SERIOUS GET ALONG? - ONE-PHOTOGRAPHER SHOW OF RADOSLAV PARVANOV AND WORKS FROM THE HUMOUR OF THE PEOPLES ART COLLECTION
Photographs
/September 14 - 28, 2016, Ruse City Art Gallery /

For two weeks running the citizens of and visitors to the Danubian city of Ruse will have the chance to acquaint themselves with the sights of the town of Gabrovo as a humour capital captured by the camera of Gabrovo photographer Radoslav Parvanov and having impressed yet another 19 photographers from Bulgaria and abroad (Germany, Switzerland, Lithuania, Russia and Iran). The exhibition was suggested by and made possible with the kind support of Prof. Venelin Terziev, lecturer at Angel Kanchev University of Ruse and SEO of Skalni Materiali JS Co.-Rousse. The name of Prof. Terziev ranks among the big benefactors of the International Biennial of Humour and Satire in the Arts.

Known to the Gabrovo public with his active work on projects related with the native Gabrovo and Bulgaria, photographer Radoslav Parvanov shows 30 colour pictures of scenic views of Gabrovo and hallmark buildings and monuments in the town. His nocturnal photos of Gabrovo, of the humour carnival, as well as picturesque snapshots of the Sokolski Monastery and Etar Ethnographic Museum in the Open are sure to move every visitor to the exhibition.

A perfect complement to Radoslav Parvanov's solo show is a collection of 35 humorous photographs housed in the core art collection of the House of Humour and Satire. They convey the individual impressions of Bulgarian and foreign photographers who have been in immediate contact with the unique character and spirit of Gabrovo as a town tucked in the folds of the Balkan Mountains.

IN DREAM AND INDEED - WORKS FROM THE HUMOUR OF THE PEOPLES ART COLLECTION
Photographs
/May 1 - September 30, 2016, Dr. Tota Venkova Multiprofile Hospital for Active Treatment, Gabrovo/

All summer through patients, physicians and medical staff at Dr.Tota Venkova Multiprofile Hospital for Active Treatment in Gabrovo will have the chance to restore their body and mental balance through laughter therapy too. The House of Humour and Satire offers them a selected collection of 20 humorous photographs housed in the Humour of the Peoples art collection. The works were created both in the last decades of the 20th century and the early years of the current one revealing an unconventional, startling look of the lens. The photographs focus on the universal longing for love and peace; the essence of human existence; the natural sense of touch with the surrounding landscape and wildlife, as well as the subtle smile brought forth by human reactions.

The collection of pictures on display presents a variety of daily situations and emotions: laughter and pain; joy and distress in the human face; the disparity between youth and old age; between the beuatiful and the ugly; between reality and dream. It is with a sense of delight and optimism that photographers from the U.S.A., Argentina, Belgium, Bulgaria, Germany, Denmark, Costa Rica, Iran, Russia, Ukraine and the Czech Republic lead the the viewer through a labyrinth of daydreams and real pictures.

CARTOONISTS' DESCENT - 2016
GAME OF THE ABSURD - SOLO EXHIBITION OF MAYA TCHOLAKOVA
Cartoons, illustrations, satirical drawings
/October 6 - December 10, 2016 Room 6/

Bulgarian artist Maya Tcholakova is the fourteenth consecutive winner of the Special prize given by the House of Humour and Satire since 2003 at the annual National Cartoon Exhibition in Sofia. Part of the prize is an invitation to the winner to put on a solo exhibition during the autumn salon of the Museum. It should be underscored that Maya Tcholakova is one of the most regular entrants in the International Biennial of Humour and Satire in the Arts. Hence, her individual presentation now is quite natural and well-deserved.

Having graduated in Illustration from the National Academy of Art in Sofia under Prof. Petar Chuklev, Tcholakova started her artistic career as an illustrator, mainly of children's books. She has successfully combined the job of a teacher and lecturer with that of an artist working actively in the field of illustration, graphic art, satirical drawings and graphic design. Since 1977 she has been participant in national and international exhibitions of illustration, graphic satire, ex libris and graphic miniature.

When she set off on the pathway of laughter, her companions were the metaphor, stylization and bright colours. But what steered her towards satire was her attempt to 'depict' the wisdom and irony contained in the folk proverbs and sayings, as well as in the Latin maxims. Today her new companions are the allegory, symbolics, the absurd. Maya Tcholakova has never ceased pursuing beauty even behind the distorted grimace of the absurd.

The exhibition encompasses 46 recent illustrations, satirical drawings and cartoons.

CARTOONISTS' DESCENT - 2016
GAGARIN'S SMILE - GUEST EXHIBITION
Cartoons
/October 6 - December 10, 2016, Room 5/

The House of Humour and Satire continues the initiative, which started in 2014, to bring together in its autumn salon cartoonists from Bulgaria and abroad, as well as to present international cartoon competitions. This year's artistic descent features the International Competition for Ironic Graphic Work organized by the Cartoonists' Society in Moscow, Russia.

The exhibition includes 64 cartoons by 61 artists from 20 countries that took part in a competition initiated as an idea well back in 2005. The objective of the competition was to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the launch of the first artificial satellite in 1957. The competition was actually held no earlier than 2011, but the collection is still being complemented. An exhibition of the prize-winning works has already been shown in Ukraine, Azerbaijan and Germany; its tour of Bulgaria this year includes a stop at the House of Humour and Satire.

Can such a significant matter as the cosmic one lend itself to irony? The challenge has been taken on by established cartoonists like Aleksey Kustovkiy, Andrey Rizhov, Paolo Dalponte, Kamil Yavuz, Valeriu Kurtu, Mikhail Zlatkovsky, Sergei Tunin, to mention but a few, as well as colleague-cartoonists from Argentina, Cuba, Malaysia and Thailand. The drawings of the artists Ivailo Tsvetkov, Jovcho Savov, Rumen Dragostinov, Trayko Popov and Valentin Georgiev offer Bulgarian interpretations of the cosmic subject matter.

The opening of Gagarin's Smile will be personally attended by Andrey Rizhov, Alexander Klishchenko and Stanislav Ashmarin.

CARTOONISTS' DESCENT - 2016
THE OLIVE - GUEST EXHIBITION
Cartoons
/October 6 - December 10, 2016,Room 5/

The International Cartoon Competition held in Kyrenia, Cyprus is the second salon invited to show a selected collection within the framework of the Cartoonists' Descent - 2016 event. The competition has one and only theme, and it is The Olive. It started as a national event in 2007, but an year later changed its format and turned into an international contest.

As the competition title suggests, the object meant to inspire and stir the imagination of cartoonists from all over the world is the ancient olive tree and its fruit. From staple food, particularly with the southern countries, the image of the olive in the cartoons has gone a long way only to find itself as projection of a variety of symbols - philosophical, historical, mythological, down to technological. The theme revelas touching points with other universal subject matter, for example, peace and life, health and ecology, women, men and children.

On display in the exhibition are prints of prize-winning works from different editions of the contest - 63 cartoons by 59 artists from 24 countries. The Gabrovo public will find familiar names among the cartoonists on show.

CARTOONISTS' DESCENT - 2016
41st NATIONAL CARTOON EXHIBITION-2016 - GUEST EXHIBITION
Cartoons
/October 6 - December 10, 2016, Room 5/

By tradition, the Cartoonists' Descent project definitely includes a selected collection of the National Cartoon Exhibition organized yearly by the Union of Bulgarian Artists and opened on 1st April in Sofia. A total of 38 Bulgarian artists have participated in this year's exhibition, however, the selected 156 original works on display at the House of Humour and Satire feature only 19 cartoonists. They are regular entrants in the international and national cartoon competitions held by the Museum.

Admittedly, the topical issues that concern and excite Bulgarian society happen to be also these on the tip of the "lance" of the cartooning community. They are political satire and caricatures of easily reconizable personas that never fail to be out of the media spotlight; present-day threat of terrorism; refugees crisis; environment protection and the potholes of Bulgarian education; the new modern technologies dependencies; the attitude of Bulgarians towards cultural heritage. There are also works focusing on the dream of a truly united Europe. The women cartoonists in the exhibition tackle the exchanges roles of women and men in the world of today.

Special guests at the opening of the exhibition will be Bulgarian cartoonists Ivailo Tsvetkov, Nikola Georgiev-Kayo and Valeri Alexandrov-Valex.

LIFE IS WONDERFUL - WORKS FROM THE HUMOUR OF THE PEOPLES ART COLLECTION
Paintings
/September 15 - November 30, 2016, Stefan Fartunov Room/

The exhibition features a selected collection of 44 paintings by 27 artists from 10 countries housed in the core art collection of the House of Humour and Satire. What unites them, in the broad sense of the word, is the joy of life theme.

The works on display unfold a sweeping panorama of life's diverse manifestations. Therefore, whether the compositions are multi-figured or not, it is the human being that takes a central position as a character in almost all arranged canvases. The characters in the paintings enjoy the simple pleasures of life; they take delight in nature; recollect fond memories of a magic childhood with tenderness and wistful longing; celebrate festivals; take the viewer into the more irrational world of the theatre and the circus; let him or her get immersed in the atmosphere of daily life.

The paintings were created in the span from the end of the 1970s to the present day. There is a conspicuous variety of viepoints on and interpretations of the subject matter, styles, forms and colour schemes. Some works reveal realistic forms, as well as magnificent naivism. Others are more narrative. In third, the form is reduced to pure geometry - simplicity and flatness that radiate positive energy.

Seen through the grand prism of time and space life is wonderful indeed. The earlier humans see through this wisdom, the longer their sense of happiness will last.

DOGS, CATS, HERRING-GULLS AND FISHES - ONE-ARTIST EXHIBITION OF NIKOLAY DOBREV (BULGARIA)
Paintings
/September 9 - October 31, 2016, Room 7/

The exhibition Dogs, Cats, Herring-gulls and Fishes is the first one-man show of Bulgarian painter Nikolay Dobrev at the House of Humour and Satire. However, this Lovech-based artist has long been an entrant in the International Biennial of Humour and Satire in the Arts. The collection on display features 34 canvases created over the last three or four years. The paintings unveil an intimate world of maritime subject matter - fishermen's boats, white beaches, small seaside towns and a sea expanse - that take the viewer's sences in captivity and transport him or her into a white-blue atmosphere of weighlessness and reflection. The serenity of the lapi lazuli and emerald green expanse in Dobrev's painitngs is broken solely by herring-gulls strutting on the beach, birds perching on tree branches, cats and dods stalking around the laid-out table, as well as the tangible absense of the human being.

Nikolay Dobrev graduated in painting from St.St.Cyril and Methodius University of Veliko Tarnovo. He has been a member of the Union of Bulgarian Artists since 1982 and has had more than 20 one-artist shows in a number of Bulgarian cities and towns. His works are treasured in the National Art Gallery in Sofia, in tens of city art galleries round Bulgaria, as well as in private collections in Italy, France, Spain, the Netherlands, Sweden, Russia, the Czech Republic, Canada, the USA, Japan and others. Dobrev is winner of prizes for the best painting at the 14th International Biennial of Humour and Satire in the Arts - Gabrovo (1999); the National Exhibition of Art Teachers - Veliko Tarnovo (2004); the National Biennial of Small Forms - Pleven (2006), to mention but a few.

Dogs, Cats, Herring-gulls and Fishes is in itself an idyllic leave-taking with summer, its sea breeze, smell of sea-weeds and overwhelming blueness. So, good-bye until the next summer!


GABROVO PROFIT - WORKS FROM THE HUMOUR OF THE PEOPLES ART COLLECTION
Jokes, anecdotes, illustrations
/September 8 - October 31, 2016, Polski Trambesh History Museum/

Following the success of the exhibition In Vino Veritas in February, this is the second show the House of Humour and Satire is putting on at the History Museum in Polski Trambesh this year. The occasion is the festival of the town and the exhibition is a special item on the festive programme.

The themed exhibition features Gabrovo jokes and anecdotes and their visual interpretation in the illustrations of the outstanding Bulgarian artist and cartoonist BORIS DIMOVSKI (1925-2007). He is one of the unquestionable visual interpreters of Gabrovo humour and his art is virtually ingrained in the foundations of the House of Humour and Satire; his illustrations, having made Gabrovo humour famous all over the world, have earned him the recognition of the Gabrovo citizens and the honour of being pronounced an honorary citizen of Gabrovo. The Humour of the Peoples art collection houses more than 500 works by the cartoonist, purchased or donated after solo exhibitions, and in recent years, kindly donated by his relatives. Of no less value is a considerable part of the museum interior designed by Boris Dimovski, as well as the series of Gabrovo humorous souvenirs crafted after his designs. No visitor leaves the House of Humour and Satire without a special memento created by Dimovski.

Nowadays Gabrovo jokes and anecdotes are made popular in more than 40 languages spoken in the world. They have even become available to the humour fans in Japan recently. Admittedly, Gabrovo comic folklore is invaluable cultural heritage that passes down to the generations to come simple life maxims and principles which have salvaged many a mountain dweller in dire straits. However, the exhibition hardly aims to turn the attendees at the vernissage into more calculating people than Gabrovians themselves, but it is sure to see them off with broad smiles on their faces.

On display at the History Museum in Poski Trambesh will also be Gabrovo humorous souvenirs. All attendees will witness a special demonstration of the proverbial Gabrovo thrift and profit-making.


THE FESTIVALS OF THE BULGARIAN PEOPLE - WORKS FROM THE HUMOUR OF THE PEOPLES ART COLLECTION
Paintings
/September 10 - October 7, 2016, Plovdiv Regional Ethnographic Museum/

The selected collection of 13 original canvases by 9 emblematic Bulgarian painters - part of the large art collection of the House of Humour and Satire - is dedicated to honouring the European Heritage Days - 2016. What a more European approach to life than the joy to celebrate and thus preserve the vitality of a whole nation.

Bulgarians are good at rejoicing; their merry-making is full of colour and sound. Therefore, the works on display are virtually bubbling with high spirits, cheefulness and brightness of colour. The festival abides in the soul of each character born by the hand of notable master painters like Kalina Atanasove, Mara Atanasova, Zlatyu Boyadzhiev, Yuri Bukov, Angel Vasilev, Stoyan Venev, Nikola G. Nikolov, Encho Pironkov and Naum Hadzhimladenov whose work spans the beginning of the 20th century and the present day. These vivid paintings echo with mummer's bells, drum beat and horse races; the skies resonate with wedding celebrations and carnival processions.

The works on display have been either entries in various editions of the International Biennial of Humour and Satire in the Arts or donations made after solo exhibitions at the House of Humour and Satire.

Part of the themed collection The Festivals of the Bulgarian People have already toured the Bulgarian towns of Dupnitsa, Sevlievo, Polski Trambesh, Kazanlak, Asenovgrad and Popovo.

MY REAL AND MAGICAL CHILDHOOD - WORKS FROM THE HUMOUR OF THE PEOPLES ART COLLECTION
Photographs
/July 21 - September 30, 2016, Room 5/

At the height of the longest and most looked-forward vacation - the summer holiday - the House of Humour and Satire offers young and grown-up visitors a flashback to the magic of childhood. It does fly away like a shot, but is never forgotten; it can be both shared and deeply private. Childhood is the time that shapes us what we are today - black & white or versicoloured.

The themed collection is comprised of 82 pictures by photographers from 24 countries. Understandably, into their focus are children, their carefree plays and adventures, their fantasies, comicly touching stories, reactions and dreams. As to the question how different it is to be a child in Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Romania, Russia, France, Turkey, Hungary, Czech Republic, Switzerland, as well as Argentina, Vietnam, India, Iran, Korea and Malaysia, the judgement can be pronounced only by the visitor who manages to see this mosaic of childhood memories captures by the photographers' lenses.

THE APPLE - WORKS FROM THE HUMOUR OF THE PEOPLES ART COLLECTION
Cartoons, graphics & drawings, paintings, sculpture
/July 21 - September 30, 2016, Room 5/

Most inspiring for the summer season and mood, The Apple themed exhibition features a small international sample of shrewd and highly original interpretations of what that best-loved fruit may stand for in cartoons, graphic works and drawings, paintings and sculpture. All of the 68 two- and three-dimensional works on display are housed in the core museum collection The Humour of the Peoples.

Bearing the burden of the Biblical image of a forbidden fruit, the apple has undergone a long evolution to gracing the logo of one of the leading hi-tech companies in the world. In most people's opinion it symbolizes good health, beauty and boon. The British recommend that we have at least one a day, however, as any physical matter in this world, the symbols the fruit is associated with reveal a darker side, too. For instance, in Bulgarian folklore the apple may also stand for deceipt, enticement, fall and even death.

The exhibition does not aim to compile a catalogue of all exisiting interprestations of the apple as a symbol, but rather to highlight the original approach to the theme demonstarated by each of the masters of humour art on show.

MONUMENTS AND POKEMON
Can Racho the Blacksmith give ten-kilometre eggs?
/September 21 - October 4 2016, Room 6/

This exhibition looks at Gabrovo through the screen of the Pokemon Go game. If up till now Gabrovo citizens, local government and tourist industry have been engaged in presenting the features of a town, the life it lives and the experience it offers to visitors, Pokemon Go suggests an entirely novel way of perceiving and interacting with the town.

The augmented reality blends the physical world with images, objects and characters that exist in the devices we carry with ourselves. The world of smartphones and tablets is closely related to the surroundings seen through the camera of the devices and registered by the geolocation functions and the built-in gyroscopic sensor. When you play Pokemon Go, the Monument of Racho the Blacksmith is seen on the screen while you are registered by your phone to be exactly there and your camera “looks” at it.

Gabrovo is known as the town of one hundred monuments. With Pokemon Go the locations of interaction between the gamer and the town are exactly the town ‘sights’ – famous architectural buildings, monuments and hallmarks of art in the public space. The sights in the game are poke stops and gyms where gamers get supplied with poke eggs, balls and potions; train their pokemon or fight against each other.

Monuments are a means of communication through time. They help each generation mark and record the outstanding public figures and events from its near past, the feats and values it wishes to hand down to the world. Of course, this is only an intention the receiving side of the communication is in no way obliged to comply with.

THE GASCAR PRIZE WINNERS - WORKS FROM THE HUMOUR OF THE PEOPLES ART COLLECTION
Drawings, paintings, cartoons, sculpture, posters
/May 21 - September 11, 2016, Stefan Fartunov Room

The prize of the town of Gabrovo - the GASCAR statuette - is the second in rank prestigious award given at the International Biennial of Humour and Satire in the Arts. It was established in 1995 as a jocose wink at the prestigious award presented by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and the inbred capacity of Gabrovo citizens to turn their sense of humour and self-irony into a profit-making commodity. The GASCAR statuette is the work of Gabrovo sculptor Mityo Solakov. It represents a stylized cat made of bronze.

The collective exhibition includes 67 works - drawings, paintings, cartoons, sculpture and posters, created by the following 11 artists and winners of the GASCAR prize: Peter Elloian (USA), Bodo Nassal, Wolfgang Schlegel, Lex Drewinski (Germany), Ross Thomson (Great Britain), Ludo Goderis (Belgium), as well as the Bulgarian artists Emil Popgenchev, Anton Kolev, Dimitar Rashkov, Emil Bachiyski and Todor Vardjiev.

All works on display are part and parcel of the Humour of the Peoples core collection the museum has assembled over the years. They constitute a wonderful sub-collection born out of the high regard and deference of Gabrovo citizens to the mastery and talent of these celebrated artists.

LEX DREWINSKI: POSTERS - SOLO GUEST SHOW
Posters
/May 21 - September 11, 2016, Stefan Fartunov Room/

Prof. LEX DREWINSKI is the eleventh winner of the GASCAR Prize awarded to him at the 22nd International Biennial of Humour and Satire in the Arts in 2015. This exhibition is his first solo show at the House of Humour and Satire comprising 50 posters that synthesize image and minimal text. However, Mr. Drewinski's contact with the International Biennial dates back as early as 1989 when he started submitting graphic works, drawings and posters to the competition. Today, the Humour of the Peoples art collection houses 20 works of his all of which donated to the museum.

Prof. Drewinski was born in 1951 in Szczecin (Poland). He studied at the State Academy of Fine Arts in Poznan and graduated with honors from Prof. Waldemar Swierzy's Class of Poster Art. His career started in the Animated Film Studio in Poznan, but in 1985 Drewinski left Poland for West Berlin. In 1992 he won the competition for the position of professor on the Faculty of Graphic Design at the University of Applied Sciences in Potsdam (Germany). Since 2010 he has been working as a professor in the Faculty of Graphic Design at the Academy of Art in Szczecin. Since 2002 he has been writing columns for the design quaterly 2+3D.

Lex Drewinski has been granted more than 170 prizes and honorable mentions at various international competitions and events in tens of countries in the world. Besides the GASCAR Prize, in Bulgaria he also won the Grand Prix at the International Triennial of Stage Poster - Sofia 2007. He has had more than 60 solo shows all over the world.

"A poster does not require a comment, it is one itself", asserts Prof. Drewinski adding, "I see it as an advantage that you have to think when looking at my posters."

GABROVO JOKES - WORKS FROM THE HUMOUR OF THE PEOPLES ART COLLECTION
Paintings
/August 11 - September 2, 2016, Balchik Art Gallery/

It is for the first time that the House of Humour and Satire is showing works from the museum art collection The Humour of the Peoples at the Art Gallery in the town of Balchik. The current exhibition is comprised of 15 paintings and is only part of a large themed collection assembled to celebrate 155 years since Gabrovo was formally proclained a town. The objective of the exhibition is to feature various interpretations of Gabrovo humour - the living cultural heritage of the town - made by contemporary Bulgarian and foreign artists.

Gabrovo jokes have given inspiration to Gabrovo-born painters Dragan Nemtsov, Minyo Bonev, Yordanka Shiyakova and Stefan Monev. Deep understanding of the symbols of Gabrovo humour is revealed in the canvases of Keazim Isinov, Georgi Trifonov, Radi Nedelchev and Nencho Bakalsi, and by general consent no display on this theme is ever conceivable without the inclusion of works by Boris Dimovski, a Gabrovo citizen of honour. Since Gabrovo humour has long been criss-crosssing the globe, the exhibition includes two canvases by foreign artists: Sexy Night at the House of Humour by Mexican artist Gilda Solis and Garden with a Cat by Feliks Buttner from Germany.

Gabrovo humour is a valuable currency that crosses borders freely and is always sought after by friends, fans and like-minded people.


THE PROTESTER - WORKS FROM THE HUMOUR OF THE PEOPLES ART COLLECTION
Cartoons
/July 1 - August 31, 2016, Room 7/

The theme of the protesting human being is definitely not a new one, but it seems never to have lost its freshness and topicality. Perhaps people are born with the disposition to grumble, resent, dsapprove, disagree or take exception to some vitally important issues. The language of cartoon, the individual insightfulness and imagination of the cartooning artists allow that the theme be unfolded into diverse surprising interpretations both of social consequenece and for pure fun.

The exhibition shows 56 works by 44 artists from 23 countries. Some of the cartoonists on display were entrants in the 22nd International Biennial of Humour and Satire in the Arts when 'The Protester' was one of the themes of the competition. Among the works on display are cartoons that come from countries in the former Eastern Bloc. They were created three or four decades ago when the mastery of the Aesopian language was a must for an artist to express or simply suggest an innocent protest.

Admittedly, it is up to the viewer whether or not to put sign of equality between the protests of the baby in the pram indignant at artificial food; the imprisoned man who, in spite of his confinement, dances, a bird in his head; the smiling policement shielding themselves against half-naked protesting women or the lovely cat perched high in a tree whose saving has mobilized a whole army of rescuers.


WITHOUT DISTANCE 450х450х450 - GUEST EXHIBITION
Sculpture
/June 17 - August 30, 2016, Room 6/

Put together to specially fit in the space of exhibition room 6 at the House of Humour and Satire, Without Distance features 15 works by 15 contemporary Bulgarian sculptors. All objects are displayed in an identical format, i.e., on a plinth and under a transparent lid in the shape of a 45 cm-edged cube. Each artist commands 91 124 cm³ of attention in the exhibition.

The participating sculptors are: Vitali Halvadzhiev, Petar Nakov, Orlin Ivanov, Petar Iliev, Todor Lambov, Pancho Kurtev, Pavlin Radevski, Krasimir Mitov, Rasho Mitev, Nikolay Marinov, Boyan Penchev, Emil Bachiyski, Ognyan Chitakov, Mincho Todorov and Kamen Tsvetkov. Emil Bachiyski is the winner of the Gascar Prize at the 19th International Biennial of Humour and Satire in the Arts and international jury member at the 22nd Biennial. Nikolay Marinov is a long-standing participant in the International Biennial. Other artists attended the National Stone Sculpture Symposium in Gabrovo (2007) and the Form Symposium at the National Applied Art High School in Tryavna(2013).

The materials the sculptors work with are wood, wax, polyester resin, concrete, metal and thermal insulation foam. The durable is presented in delicate materials; the shapes and volumes generally overlooked are substantiated in concrete casts. Some of the artists work with negative spaces, imprints, traces of presence; others mark out the idea of a captured space with model-like installations.

The exhibition Without Distance manifests both a return to modernism, such as it never happened in 20th-century Bulgaria and a rejection to interact with present-day political and social reality.

GABROVO PROFIT - WORKS FROM THE HUMOUR OF THE PEOPLES ART COLLECTION
Jokes, anecdotes, illustrations
/July 14 - August 14, 2016, Beach Casino Cultural Centre, Burgas/

After a successful 'crash course' in Gabrovo enterprise and inventiveness at the Regional History Museum in Targovishte, the themed exhibition Gabrovo Profit is on its way to the seaside. It will be hosted by the Beach Casino Cultural Centre in Burgas and will be the first exhibition from the House of Humour and Satire included in the summer programme of the Cultural Centre.

The themed exhibition features Gabrovo jokes and anecdotes and their visual interpretation in the illustrations of the outstanding Bulgarian artist and cartoonist BORIS DIMOVSKI (1925-2007). He is one of the unquestionable visual interpreters of Gabrovo humour and his art is virtually ingrained in the foundations of the House of Humour and Satire; his illustrations, having made Gabrovo humour famous all over the world, have earned him the recognition of the Gabrovo citizens and the honour of being pronounced an honorary citizen of Gabrovo. The Humour of the Peoples art collection houses more than 500 works by the cartoonist, purchased or donated after solo exhibitions, and in recent years, kindly donated by his relatives. Of no less value is a considerable part of the museum interior designed by Boris Dimovski, as well as the series of Gabrovo humorous souvenirs crafted after his designs. No visitor leaves the museum without a special memento created by Dimovski.

Nowadays Gabrovo jokes and anecdotes are made popular in more than 40 languages spoken in the world. They have even become available to the humour fans in Japan recently. Admittedly, Gabrovo comic folklore is invaluable cultural heritage that passes down to the generations to come simple life maxims and principles which have salvaged many a mountain dweller in dire straits. However, the exhibition hardly aims to turn the attendees at the vernissage into more calculating people than Gabrovians themselves, but it is sure to see them off with broad smiles on their faces.


SPORT AND A GOOD LAUGH MAKE OUR CHOICE FOR A HEALTHY LIFE - BIENNIAL EXHIBITION OF HUMOROUS AND SATIRICAL CHILDREN'S DRAWINGS
Children's drawings
/May 22 - July 18, 2016, Room 5/

The exhibition features 224 selected works from this year's competition for the best humorous or satirical children's drawing on the topic Sport and a Good Laugh Make Our Choice for a Healthy Life. It is complemented with 40 drawings on the same topic by young artists from the Belgian town of Aalst, twinned with Gabrovo.

The sustaining interest of the House of Humour and Satire in furthering children's creativity and art, as well as in developing a sense of humour with the coming generations can be traced back as early as 1985 when the first large-scale children's art event held by the museum took place. In different years of its history the House has enjoyed the support of various partners in this field of its endeavours. Most enduring and long-standing have been Friends of Belgium Club in Gabrovo and the Foundation People Serve Bulgaria: Aalst-Gabrovo.

This year's competition is held under the patronage of H.E. Anick Van Calster, Amabassador of the Kingdom of Belgium to Bulgaria. 242 young artists from 10 schools and 8 extracurricular art schools on the territory of Gabrovo district took part in the competition. This autumn a selected collection of the best drawings will be displayed at the OLV municipal hospital, recognized as one of the best clinics in Belgium.

GABROVO PROFIT - WORKS FROM THE HUMOUR OF THE PEOPLES ART COLLECTION
Jokes, anecdotes, illustrations
/May 12, 2016, Regional History Museum, Targovishte/

The themed exhibition features Gabrovo jokes and anecdotes and their visual interpretation in the illustrations of the outstanding Bulgarian artist and cartoonist BORIS DIMOVSKI (1925-2007).

Nowadays Gabrovo jokes and anecdotes are made popular in more than 40 languages spoken in the world. They have even become available to the humour fans in Japan recently. Admittedly, Gabrovo comic folklore makes invaluable cultural heritage passing down to the generations to come simple life maxims and principles which have salvaged many a mountain dweller in dire straits. As to life situations, they may change and recur in equal measure. Therefore, the following maxim is likely to ring truthful even today:"If you have no money, go to Gabrovo to learn how it is earned; if you have money, go again to Gabrovo to see how it is spent."

One of the unquestionable visual interpreters of Gabrovo humour is Bulgarian artist Boris Dimovski. His art is virtually ingrained in the foundations of the House of Humour and Satire; his illustrations, having made Gabrovo humour famous all over the world, have earned him the recognition of the Gabrovo citizens and the honour of being pronounced an honorary citizen of Gabrovo. The Humour of the Peoples art collection houses 390 works by the cartoonist, purchased or donated after solo exhibitions, and in recent years, kindly donated by his relatives. Of no less value is a considerable part of the museum interior designed by Boris Dimovski, as well as the series of Gabrovo humorous souvenirs crafted after his designs. No visitor leaves the museum without a special memento created by Dimovski.


FINESSE ON THE TIP OF THE PENCIL - ONE-ARTIST SHOW OF WORKS BY PAOLO DALPONTE (ITALY)
Cartoons
/April 21 - August 31, 2016, Room 7/

It is the second visit Italian illustrator, painter and cartoonist PAOLO DALPONTE is paying to the Museum HOUSE OF HUMOUR AND SATIRE. In 2015, at the time of the 22nd International Biennial of Humour and Satire in the Arts, he flew over to Gabrovo to receive in person the special prize for cartoon awarded to him by the Ministry of Health of R. Bulgaria. Now he is showing a solo exhibition of 125 cartoons drawn in the recent years.

Holder of more than 40 prizes from international competitions, Paolo Dalponte was born in Poia di Lomaso, Italy, where he still lives and works. He graduated from the National Institute of Applied Arts of Trento. He has collaborated with a number of publishing houses and has taught the techniques of pencil drawing at evening classes. His art has been on display in 42 solo shows across the globe.

The title of the exhibition - Finesse on the Tip of the Pencil - is a pure metaphor of the artist's style. He prefers the black-and-white technique, therefore the pencil is his most suited tool to describe subjects in sharp details. In Dalponte's view the absence of colour takes to a colder view of the subject, to a more analytical rather than emotional viewpoint. Those who attend the exhibition opening will have the chance to hear from the artist himself of some secrets about the conception of a cartoon.

Paolo Dalponte's second visit to Gabrovo was made possible thanks to the kind cooperation of the Italian Cultural Institute in Sofia. Therefore, a special guest to the opening of the show is expected to be Mrs. Luigina Peddi, director of the Institute.

THE FESTIVALS OF THE BULGARIAN PEOPLE - WORKS FROM THE HUMOUR OF THE PEOPLES ART COLLECTION
Paintings
/March 22, 2016, Popovo History Museum/

Bulgarian people need no special occasion to celebrate. Neither do they care much about the scene of merry-making. The party may take place in a cafe just round the corner or at home or somewhere out in the open. As long as it is a proper celebration!

After visiting the Bulgarian towns of Dupnitsa, Sevlievo, Polski Trambesh, Kazanlak and Asenovgrad, the themed exhibition The Festivals of the Bulgarian People will be on show in the History Museum in Popovo. It features a collection of 30 paintings by 22 Bulgarian artists whose work stretches from the early 20th c. up to the present day. Among them are Stoyan Venev, Encho Pironkov, Emil Stoychev, Dariya Vasilyanska, Kalina Atanasova, Gredi Assa, Nedko Solakov, Ivan Popchev, Tsvetan Kolev, Naum Hadzhimladenov, Mara Atanasova and others. All canvases are housed in the extensive collection of paintings owned by the Museum HOUSE OF HUMOUR AND SATIRE which numbers 1 460 works.

Crowded festive scenes and compositions - weddings, Christmases, Trifon Zarezan wine festivals or everyday pastime and dances, a relaxing chat or a mysterious coffee-cup reading - draw the viewer's eye with their liveliness, colour and elated spirit. Fire-dancers, mummers, horse-races, games and carnival pageants add to the mosaic of this truly festive show.


THE SMILE - GUEST EXHIBITION OF WORKS BY KALIN NIKOLOV AND TSVETAN STOYANOV (BULGARIA)
Photographs, drawings, cartoons
/April 1 - June 20, 2016, Room 6/

A focal event in the first-of-April programme of the House of Humour and Satire celebrating the 44th birthday of the museum and the 40th birthday of the minor planet GABROVO is a literally "smiling" exbibition of photographs, drawings and cartoons. It features the creative tandem of KALIN NIKOLOV and TSVETAN STOYANOV in 59 photographs of smiling faces and 15 cartoons and drawings on topics drawn on Bulgarian reality.

Both artists are graduates of the National Academy of Art in Sofia. Kalin Nikolov majored in Graphic Art and Techniques , but has been doing cartoons since 1973. Tsvetan Stoyanov graduated in Mural Painting and at present is an associate professor in the Drawing department at the National Academy of Art. Ha has delivered lectures and conducted seminars on photography at New Bulgarian University. Stoyanov has been recently engaged in taking photographs of smiling people which has proved a tricky task.

"I think that in presnt-day dynamic world a similar display can be taken as a mirror of the human soul, so anyone looking at the smiling faces will unconsciously start smiling too. I can only hope that the people who will see the show will smile more frequently and more sincerely in the future", says Tsvetan Stoyanov thus truthfully introducing the viewer to the general positive atmosphere of THE SMILE. It is Stoyanov who has invited Kalin Nikolov to join him in visualizing his own idea of the smile, only in cartoons.

The similarities between the two artists do not end here. Both are members of the Union of Bulgarian Artists, entrants in the International Biennial of Humour and Satire in the Arts, artists with numerous solo shows in Bulgaria and abroad. Kalin Nikolov works in the field of painting, graphic art, illustration, cartoon, book and periodicals design. Tsvetan Stoyanov is interested in experimenting with colours, form and composition in painting, the decorative and monumental arts, drawing and graphic design. As an art photographer he searches for what is exciting, curious and surprising taken from a certain angle.

The gallery of smiling faces in the exhibition will inevitably make the viewer feel the corners of his mouth stretch imperceptibly into a unique smile on his face. May the kind viewer be in no haste to tuck his smile away into his pocket, for if he attempts to smile more frequently, the surrounding world will surely smile back.

IN VINO VERITAS - WORKS FROM THE HUMOUR OF THE PEOPLES ART COLLECTION
Cartoons
/February 14,2016, Polski Trambesh History Museum/

To honour the Day of the Vine-grower, the Museum HOUSE OF HUMOUR AND SATIRE is showing a themed exhibition of cartoons housed in the Humour of the Peoples art collection. The celebrated Latin dictum IN VINO VERITAS is interpreted by 42 cartoonists and possible followers of Dionysus or Bacchus from 17 countries: Azerbaijan, Armenia, Bulgaria, Germany, Greece, Iran, Spain, Italy, China, Latvia, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Turkey, Ukraine, France and the Netherlands.

What is the Bulgarian attitude to the drink of the gods? Cheerful laughter, affection and magnanimity spring up from the five cartoons by the great Boris Dimovdski. Georgi Chalakov's stories about casks unfold a dramatic family saga. The cartoons by Maiya Cholakova and Nezhna Filipova are charged with poetry, philosophy and subtle meaning.

Wine can work miracles, so the cartoonists' works go well beyond the confines of everyday subject matter and take a purely humanistic stand. The exhibition displays no wild passions, but well measured and refined storylines which suggest what truth is to be sought in wine. Among the foreign artists on show stand out Florian Doru Crihana, Tudor Pal, Musa Gumus, Paolo Dalponte, Vangelis Pavlidis, Serafim Bakoulis, Miodrag Velickovic, to mention but a few.

THE MUSES PAYING A VISIT - RETROSPECTIVE EXHIBITION OF WORKS BY RUMEN GASHAROV (BULGARIA)
Paintings
/February 25 - May 15, 2016, Stefan Fartunov Room

The retrospective exhibition celebrates the 80th anniversary of the birth of contemporary Bulgarian painter RUMEN GASHAROV whose prolific work of many years is closely related with the development of the Museum HOUSE OF HUMOUR AND SATIRE. The number of the selected works on display - also 80 - is hardly accidental. 60 canvases come directly from the artist's studio while 20 are housed in the Humour of the Peoples core museum collection. The latest painting in the exhibition was created this year; the earliest one dates back to 1966. Over this 50-year span of time Rumen Gasharov has remained faithful to his singular style and preferred subject matter.

The artist was born in Plovdiv in 1936. In 1962 he graduated from the Academy of Art in Sofia under Prof. Iliya Petrov. Over the years he has shown one-artist exhibitions in Bulgaria, Hungary, Poland, the Czech Republic, Germany, Great Britain, Italy and Russia. In 1977 Gasharov won First prize at the International Exhibition Humour and Satire in Painting in Gabrovo. There followed more prizes and recognition in 1984, 1987 and 1989. Works by Rumen Gasharov can be found in the National Art Gallery in Sofia, Sofia City Art Gallery, PUSHKIN Musem in Moscow, 23 art galleries all over Bulgaria, as well as in a number of Bulgarian and foreign private collections.

Identified as the "founder of Bulgarian pop-art", Gasharov has introduced the theme of the little man and his everyday life in contemporary painting. His works feature fragments of life stories, dreams and fables soaked in grotesque, satire and irony. Gasharov's art encapsulates a whole universe of people surrounded by things, on the backdrop of house interior settings, who seem to contrive banal storylines, but in fact convey their own messages.


2 + 2 - COLLECTIVE EXHIBITION of works by Croatian cartoonists NENAD OSTOJIC and DAMIR NOVAK and Bulgarian cartoonists IVAILO TSVETKOV and TRAYKO POPOV
Cartoons
/April 1 - May 15, 2016, Room 5/

The collective exhibition of cartoons by the Croatian-Bulgarian foursome, which is a special item on the first-of-April programme of the House of Humour and Satire this year, was made possible under an ambitious project implemented by the International Association of Cartoonists (MIKS) in Sisak - a sister town of Gabrovo. As a project partner the Museum HOUSE OF HUMOUR AND SATIRE is playing host to the very first event of the initiative. Each of the four cartoonists is showing 15 works on topics that inspire them. In 2017 the exhibition will be on display in the town of Sisak (Croatia).

NENAD OSTOJIC Born in 1965 in Gospic (Croatia), Ostojic studied journalism in a secondary culture and art school. Later on he received a Bachelor’s degree in basketball coaching. In 1984 he finished an animation school with Zagreb Film under Josko Marusic as a mentor. Ostojic volunteered in the 1991-1992 war and during the Storm operation in 1995. He has worked in the field of journalism, illustration, cartoon, animated films, computer games and sports, and has been engaged in humanitarian activities. Ostojic has authored one animated film and two computer games; illustrated several children’s books and textbooks. His work has appeared in a number of national and international magazines, e-magazines and web portals. A participant in 50 international cartoon exhibitions, in recent years he has presented Croatian cartoon in Turkey, Slovenia, Austria and Belgium. Nenad Ostojic is founder and organizer of the International Cartoon Exhibition in Sisak (MIX).

DAMIR NOVAK Born in Mali Mihaljevic (Croatia) where he is still living and working. Novak has finished a catering school in Ljubljana (Slovenia), and after that - a fire-technicians school in Zagreb. He started drawing cartoons and caricatures and in 1980 he became a member of the Croatian Cartoonists Association. He has contributed works to local and humour-and-satire specialized magazines. Novak has participated in a number of international and national cartoon festivals and has won 47 prizes at festivals in Korea, Croatia, China, Syria, Italy, Austria, Canada, Macedonia, Iran, Romania, Turkey, to mention but a few.

IVAILO TSVETKOV Born in 1964 in Troyan, Tsvetkov graduated from the Fine Arts High School in Sofia in 1983. Since 1993 he has been contributing works to Pardon, Duma, Republika newspapers, Tema magazine and others. At present he is working for Monitor and Telegragh newspapers. Tsvetkov is a member of the Union of Bulgarian Artists and president of FECO-Bulgaria. He has participated in cartoon festivals and salons in Bulgaria, Serbia, Macedonia, Italy, France, Belgium, Slovakia, Romania, Russia, Portugal, Poland, Turkey, Brazil, Colombia, Israel, Iran and others, and has been awarded 70 prizes and honorable mentions at international cartoon competitions. Ivailo Tsvetkov is winner of the special prize given by the Museum HOUSE OF HUMOUR AND SATIRE at the 34th National Cartoon Exhibition – Sofia 2009; the prize for cartoon given by the Ministry of Culture at the 14th and 18th International Biennial of Humour and Satire in the Arts – Gabrovo (1999, 2007) and the prize given by Gabrovo Planet Society for a work on Gabrovo subject matter at the 20th International Biennial of Humour and Satire in the Arts – Gabrovo 2011.

TRAYKO POPOV Born in 1955, Popov lives and works in Sofia. A member of the Union of Bulgarian Artists since 1988, he participated in dozens of national and international cartoon, illustration and poster competitions between 1975 and 1989. After the political changes in 1989, he left for the U.S.A. where he specialized in conceptual design and developed animation software. In 2000 Popov set up his own design company; he continues drawing cartoons applying predominantly digital technologies. At present he is a free-lance cartoonist and illustrator of various publications and events. His humour art has been distinguished with prizes awarded in Bulgaria, Belgium, France, Italy, Romania, Turkey, USA, Canada and others. Popov is winner of the prize for cartoon given by the Ministry of Culture at the 20th International Biennial of Humour and Satire in the Arts – Gabrovo 2011 and the special prize given by the Museum HOUSE OF HUMOUR AND SATIRE at the 38th National Cartoon Exhibition – Sofia 2013.

CHERCHEZ LA FEMME! - WORKS FROM THE HUMOUR OF THE PEOPLES ART COLLECTION
Posters, sculpture
/March 1 - May 15, 2016, Room 5/

The focal theme of the events held by the House of Humour and Satire in March is the multi-faceted image of the woman. It explains the title of the exhibiton specially searched for. Cherchez la femme is a celebrated catch-phrase by Alexandre Dumas père which has evolved to suggest that there is always a woman involved in any intricate or consequential matter.

The exhibition features twenty-two poster artists from Poland, Turkey, Korea and Bulgaria along with nine Bulgarian sculptors "looking for the woman" in her numerous transfigurations: from a muse and an inspirer down to a shrewd temptress who can frivolously throw men into black madness or egregious folly. The woman is fully capable of stamina, perfidy and hatred, but she can be equally delicate, innocent and frail. Whichever face she is willing to show, a halo of beauty and love always radiates round it. Therefore, the world is inconceivable without women!

Among the artists on show are masters of poster art and International Biennial of Humour and Satire in the Arts prizewinners like Cemalettin Yildiz (Turkey), Prof. Todor Vardjiev, Prof. Nikolay Mladenov, Bozhidar Ikonomov, Milena Abanos, Lyuba Tomova, Krasimira Drumeva, and others. The exquisite three-dimensional interpretations of the woman's image in the exhibition belong to Vezhdi Rashidov, Dimitar Rashkov, Petyo Aleksandrov, Margarita Pueva, Dimitar Sotirov and Mihail Shapkarov.

"Only a woman can turn a man into a success or a failure", say down-to-earth Bulgarians and who would disagree?

PHOTO CLICK - SOLO SHOW OF WORKS BY FRANCISCO PUNAL SUAREZ (SPAIN)
Photographs
/March 17 - April 15, 2016, Room 7/

The exhibition features 34 humorous photographs by Francisco Punal Suarez, one of the entrants in the 22nd International Biennial of Humour and Satire in the Arts - Gabrovo 2015. In the photographer's words, "Humour is in all of us. We live with it in all of life's circumstances. Now, knowing how to identify it and translating it into an artistic image is a task that requires sensitibity, a point of view and knowing some of the truths of human character." The photographs on display reveal a sensivive explorer and connoisseur of human nature who 'when going out onto the streets searches for images that capture all the contrasts, exaggerations and double meanings that are present.'

Who is Francisco Punal Suarez? He was born in Cuba in 1950 and graduated from the University of Havana with a degree in journalism in 1974. That same year he began his film career in the Cuban Institute of Cinematographic Art and Industry (ICAIC). Documentary film director, assistant director to Cuban filmmakers, producer at Noticiero ICAIC Latinoamericano. Francisco Punal won first prize at the Photo Humor Festival in Boyeros, Havana in 1988; conducted film workshops on the Canary Islands; sat many a time on the jury of the World Festival PortoCartoon (Portugal, 2001 and 2002); Curuxa Graphic Humor Award in Fene (2001, 2003 and 2004); World Press Cartoon, Sinta (Portugal, 2013). His humorous photographs appear in various Spanish electronic media and in international humor magazines.

"A good humorous photo will make us laugh and think. And laughter, loud or silent, open or concealed, inevitably arises when humour has arrived, and confirms to us that anything is possible,", says the photographer.

The House of Humour and Satire is sincerely delighted that Mr. Punal's photography exhibition was made possible.

GABROVO FOCUS - WORKS FROM THE HUMOUR OF THE PEOPLES ART COLLECTION
Graphic works, sculpture
/January 14 - April 15, 2016, Room 7/

The opening exhibition on the 2016 cultural calendar of the Museum HOUSE OF HUMOUR AND SATIRE focuses the spotlight on a sizeable group of Gabrovo artists - graphic artists and sculptors belonging to different generations - whose works are housed in the core museum collection. The organizers of the exhibition take a low bow to the artists' talent and contribution to the development of culture in Gabrovo. The assembled collection may also be percieved as a token of gratitude for a long-standing partnership establishing the House of Humour and Satire as an international centre of humour and satire in contemporary arts.

Gabrovo Focus showcases 58 graphic works and drawings by 21 artists. Part of them has been entries in various editions of the International Biennial of Humour and Satire in the Arts. Another part has made their way to the museum collection as donations made after one-artist shows at the House. Among the Gabrovo graphic art doyens rank Bozhidar Kovachev, Tihomir Rusinov, Peycho Todorov and Ivan Denchev. The younger generation is represented by Momchil Mihaylov and Maria Korkinova. As many as 16 graphic works highlight Desislav Panchev's creative pursuits. Early works by graphic artists who belong to the middle-aged generation outline their preferred subject matter: the cats of Yordanka Shiyakova and Bozhidar Mechev; Bogdan Fartunov's tales; Ivan Uzunov's love collages; Plamen Penev's figural compositions; Pencho Penchev's ex libris works. It turns out that artists who have made a name in other genres have also been tempted to reach for the pencil, the Indian ink and the pen: Adrian Novakov, Nikolay Tsvetanov, Georgi Karaliev, Nikola Nikolov, Boryana Dimitrova, Nikifor Ruskov.

The second genre in the exhibition is sculpture - 14 pieces by 11 sculptors: Georgi Balabanov (winner of the Golden Aesop Grand Prix in 2011; Dragomila Doykin (winner of the Young Talent prize given by Lions Club-Gabrovo in 2013); Nikolay Tsvetanov (winner of the prize for sculpture presented by Skalni Materiali JS Co.-Rousse in 2015); The sculptors Nikola Vinev, Dimitrinka Grancharova, Kina Hitsova, Ivan Kanchev, Iva Hadzhieva and Nikolay Razhdashki are presented in the show with one work each. Among the sculptures on display are two statuettes given as awards at international art fora in Gabrovo: the GASCAR statuette by Mityo Solakov (the prize of the town of Gabrovo given at the International Biennial of Humour and Satire in the Arts) and OSCAR THE CAT by Adrian Novakov (an award given at the International Festival of One-Actor Performances BGMOT).


SHEEP AND WOLVES - GUEST EXHIBITION
Cartoons
/February 4 - March 25, 2016, Room 5/

The selected collection comprised of 134 cartoons by 84 artists from 28 countries features the 8th MASTERS OF CARICATURE International Biennial. It is an already traditional event held by the Regional Ethnographic Museum in Plovdiv, the University of Agribusiness and Rural Development in Plovdiv and the Plovdiv Cartoonists Association.

Traditional thinking could hardly ackonowledge the highly polarized wolf - sheep duo as anything short of classical enemies. On the one hand is the representative of the wild and the vicious forces. Against it stands up the innocent lamb backed up by the evolved images of the sheep and the ram. How equally matched the adversaries are both as leaders and victims and what battles they fight on the cartoonists' white sheet is what the masters of cartooning depict in their works submitted to the eighth edition of the Plovdiv International Biennial. They show the weak opposed to the powerful; the beast against the defenceless; the clash between the evil and the good interpreted most imaginatively in a variety of aspects: philosophical, topical, criminal, sexual, culinary, moral, magisterial, productive, tragic, but invariably comic or satirical. More often than not the consciously traded parts urge the viwer to ponder on the circumstances that determine the general attitude to who actually the wolf is and who - the lamb in contemporary life.

HOW TO BECOME A PHOTOGRAPHER? - GUEST EXHIBITION
Photographs
/February 11 - March 25, 2016, Room 5/

A collective answer to the question "How to Become a Photographer?" give students from the lower secondary and high schools in Gabrovo. Their infatuation with photography is expertly encouraged and guided by Gabrovo photographer Evgeni Michev, for in the course of two years they acquired knowledge and developed skills under SUCCESS 2013-2015 project.

The exhibition features 68 black-and-white and colour pictures by 9 budding photographers. The subject matter that has stirred their imagination is typical for their age, thus the objects captured by their lenses convey catching optimism, high spirits and youth ferver. The photographs display smiling faces, pets, flowers, houses and streets, celebrating people and children at play.

Side by side with his students, Gabrovo photographer Evgeni Michev is showing a collection of 30 portraits of young girls and women. The photographs bespeak a vivid imagination, aesthetic refinement and depth of suggestiveness - professional qualities the photographer is determined to hand down to his students with success.


GAUDEAMUS IGITUR... - GUEST EXHIBITION OF PHOTOGRAPHS BY ANTOAN BOZHINOV AND HIS STUDENTS
Photographs
/December 4, 2015 - March 25, 2016, Room 6/

Traditionally, the Museum HOUSE OF HUMOUR AND SATIRE celebrates the Students' Day in Bulgaria allocating part of its exhibition space for students' creativity and art in a particular genre of art. This year the invitation to show their best achievements was extended to Bulgarian art photographer ANTOAN BOZHINOV and his students majoring in photography at New Bulgarian University in Sofia and in the Faculty of Journalism and Mass Communications at St. Kliment Ohridski University of Sofia.

The exhibition is comprised of 123 photographs by 59 students instructed by Antoan Bozhinov. Part of the selected works are successful course assignments; the rest reflect a youth's view on a variety of subject matter: people and cars, shop windows, construction sites, street stalls, protests, city celebrations and many others.

As the concept of this traditional December event at the House is to present art students side by side with their teachers, the current exhibition also includes 25 pictures from two series - Self-portraits and Portraits of My Facebook Friends by art photographer Antoan Bozhinov. He is founder and chair-person of PHODAR Foundation which holds the namesake international photography biennial. The latter boasts already nine editions held. Bozhinov has been an entrant in the Gabrovo International Biennial of Humour and Satire in the Arts since 1983. In 2007 he was presented with the Prize for photography given by the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Bulgaria. He has had a one-photographer show at the House of Humour and Satire and has put on display a selected collection of pictures submitted to PHODAR Biennial.


FAMILY QUARTET - REPRESENTATIVE EXHIBITION OF WORKS BY THE POPGENCHEV FAMILY
Paintings
/October 29, 2015 - February 20, 2016 Stefan Fartunov Room/

On the eve of November 1 - National Enlighteners Day - the Museum HOUSE OF HUMOUR AND SATIRE brings together the work of three generations of artists in the Popgenchev family. A large-scale collection of 75 paintings traces back the genetically transmitted love of art from father EMIL POPGENCHEV and mother SNEZHINA POPGENCHEVA through daughter EMANUELA BAYRAKOVA down to graddaughter STANISLAVA BAYRAKOVA. Though all four share the same vocation, each has developed a singular style, aesthetics and a scope of suggestions.

The name of Emil Popgenchev is emblematic for Gabrovo not only on the grounds of being the artist's birthplace. Emil and Snezhina Popgenchev spent the early years of their artistic career exactly in Gabrovo, but in time they decisively changed the mountainous landscape for the blueness of the Black Sea moving life and work to the city of Varna. However, the bonds with Gabrovo proved nothing short of strong and firm over the years. Both were regular entrants in the International Biennial of Humour and Satire in the Arts. In 1987 Emil Popgenchev won an honorary mention; in 1999 he was awarded the special prize for painting given by the Ministry of Culture of the Republic Bulgaria; in 2001 he was presented with the highly prestigious Gabrovo prize - the GASCAR statuette. In 2003 he designed and painted the decorative wall panel The World Lasts Because It Laughs on the western facade of the museum building. In 2007 the artist made a donation of 45 of his and his wife's works to the House of Humour and Satire thus becoming the biggest Bulgarian doner over the last 20 years registered in the Humour of the Peoples art collection.

Daughter Emanuela and graddaughter Stanislava grew up in art studios and exhibition halls. They follow their parents' example to submit works to the International Biennial of Humour and Satire in the Arts. This exhibition features a total of 23 canvases by both of them.

The family spirit of the exhibition will be complemented by Emil and Snezhina Popgenchev's second daughter, Velyana, who will have the honour of introducing the remarkable quartet to the Gabrovo public.


MERRY CHRISTMAS & A CHEERFUL NEW YEAR! - CHILDREN'S ART
Children's drawings
/December 9, 2015 - January 31, 2016, Room 5/

Brightly coloured drawings with Christmas motifs and fairy-tale characters add to the pre-festive atmosphere at the House of Humour and Satire. Among the dozen traditional local events the faithful Gabrovo public associates the museum with, this exhibition stands out as an original review of children's art created in the children's art schools of Gabrovo. It is in these works, shining in iridiscent colours, often naive, but always touching, that the viewer can easily distinguish the promising Gabrovo and Bulgaria's artists of the future.

For the first time young artists from four children's art schools in Gabrovo have the chance to show their creative output simultaneously and at one and the same place. The exhibition is a "maiden flight" for Art World school headed by Milena Koleva. The school makes a display of the artistic skills of 57 children with 119 drawings.

For the twenty-third time now the long-established school Encaustic Painting will show works by new generations of artists instructed by teacher Rumen Trifonov. The third and fourth schools participating in the exhibition are respectively Children's School Applied Arts Fun (set up in 2009) and the Fine Arts Studio headed by teacher Mariana Trifonova.

Children's art convey an ardent hope for a better and more sensible world. Therefore, let's stop and look at children's drawings more often than not, for in them are encoded the true messages for the future.


KUKERLANDIYA (MUMMERS' LAND) - INTERNATIONAL PHOTOGRAPHY GUEST EXHIBITION/COMPETITION
Photographs
/November 11, 2015 - January 31, 2016, Room 5/

The photography exhibition KUKERLANDIYA lends Bulgarian colour to this year's festive atmosphere of November 11. In fact, it is the designation of a masquerade and carnival held yearly by Yambol and Tundzha municipalities. Under the same name is also held an international photography competition followed by an exhibition. The collection of selected photographs on display at the House of Humour and Satire features works from six consecutive competitions (2010-2015) lent by George Papazov Art Gallery of Yambol.

Kukerlandiya is the Land of the Mummers - masked and dressed-up figures of participants from all corners of Bulgaria whose ritual dances and pealing heavy bells are believed to chase evil away. Small wonder mummers' groups take part in the Gabrovo carnival every May - in the hope that the good will prevail over the evil and that each following year will be more successful than the one before.

BIRTHING OF THE LIGHT - ONE-ARTIST SHOW OF VALENTIN ATANASOV (BULGARIA)
Paintings
/November 19, 2015 - January 10, 2016, Room 7/

Created years ago by Gabrovo artist VALENTIN ATANASOV, the canvases and the music piece are presented at the House of Humour and Satire to honour a special occasion. It is the year 2015 declared by UN as the International Year of Light and Light-based Technologies. The event is realized in partership with the Gabrovo branch of the Union of the Physicists in Bulgaria.

The thematic exhibition Birthing of the Light features 43 paintings, part of a whole series of works celebrating light. Light is multifaceted; its manifestations can be sought in nature, as well as in human spirituality and relations. Valentin Atanasov's canvases scintillate with bright colours and high spirits revealing the artist's perception of those nature's bounties that are often taken for granted by people.

Atanasov graduated from the Fine Arts High School in Sofia and then majored in mural painting at the Nikolay Pavlovich National Academy of Art. He works in the field of monumental art, painting, graphic art and design, music and poetry. He has created more than 100 decorative monumental works and thousands of canvases, graphic works and drawings, trademarks and applied art projects.