Between 1927 and 1931 Smrekar was a regular contributor to the Zagreb humorous and satirical magazine Koprive, producing over seventy drawings that were printed as colour lithographs and accompanied by text. The drawings commented on events in Croatia and beyond, and involved all social strata – workers, peasants, intellectuals, politicians and generals, as well as political, social and cultural affairs. Another friendly warning came from the Zagreb caricaturist Sergej Mironović Golovčenko (1898–1937), a collaborator of the Koprive magazine, who informed Smrekar that the “new bosses” find some of the satire too harsh and think the naked bodies are drawn in too severe a style. On the one hand, the editors of Koprive were eager to attack the government, but on the other they were worried that the caricatures of Anton Korošec, the head of the dominant Slovene People’s Party, would harm sales in Slovenia. Their caution was due to the fact that the magazine had already been confiscated for being scandalous. Smrekar was asked not to caricature Vladko Maček (1879–1964; Croatian lawyer and politician, leader of the Croatian Peasant Party and the Peasant Democratic Coalition) or Svetozar Pribićević (1875–1936; Croatian politician of Serbian origin, leader of the Independent Democratic Party and Minister of Internal Affairs), but he could address the four-party government coalition, the situation in the country, current events and occasionally foreign policy. However, women were not to appear too undressed. In principle, they asked him for “tame jokes”, while leaving him to decide the theme.
Satirical Magazine Nettles
Capton: In order to avoid further disputes, guesswork and costs, I suggest for the monuments to be created in line with the example of “the matador” toy. Out of separate details, we can construct arbitrary monuments on arbitrary places. The missing details shall be added on an individual case basis. E.g.: Miklošič is bestowed a stragglier moustache of a Serbian provenance – and there, Vuk Karadžić is complete. Etc, etc. The bases, or rather, entire monuments, shall be set on wheels. Thus, the monuments would be able to move between places and Ljubljana, should the need occur, could rent them out to other municipalities. – What a rich perspective! For this salvation, this economical idea, I wish to call upon no one except the honorary Ljubljana citizens. Please contact me to order a well-paid BA. H. Smrekar
Caption: Ljubljana Theatre and University: – Dear, oh dear! We have been poorly fed before, but now, we are left with nothing except for Radićchio and bulbs (roots)!
Caption: Slovenian Democratic Party: – As long as we are still on the islands, we shall not yet drown! – Tis but this – tis but the praying mantis in the back that worries me!
Caption: I. Cankar (to I. Grohar): “Blessed are we! Should we still be alive, only God knows on what straw mat in which jail we would now be rotting, to the joy of all sorts of patriots!”
Caption: Stipa: – “But I reckon I’m a fine Carniolan myself – bless my soul!”
Caption: In Austria, in Yugoslavia
Caption: “… I went to the holy mass every day, I pinched in for the bells, I promised my patron a one-pound candle, but the devils still got me on the account of a perjury!”
Caption: “A bunch of signs on the capes are yet incomplete. What sign, for instance, goes to those who, due to really bad grades, hang themselves or drown? (And should the capes come into regular use, let them also be worn by the teachers’ assembly, so it is obvious who the pedagogues are, and who simply a mechanical beater, who is the benevolent guide to the youth and who a bitter sadist.”
Captioned on the reverse: The voice of the people / issues a sorrowful complaint that the judges / and psychiatrists are acquitting the criminals on the account of madness. / To satisfy the legal sentient of the crowds, there are / three possible ways: / 1.) and best is for the justicia of lynching to be introduced. / This disburdens the judiciary and psychiatrists / of work and responsibility. / 2.) for the jury to be unscrupulous, that is, / for them to choose among the worst illite- / rates who are under the grace of God, / according to the saying: “Blessed are the poor in spirit …” / 3.) for the jury to be replaced by two “pre-sit- / tidents” – innocent children. / Kids are tiny angels. And an angelic mind / by all means surpasses the human one.
Caption: Bridegroom: – “Father, just throw in the Croatian piglet, as well, and then we strike! Can’t you see what a skinny twig the bride is!”
Caption: Seller at the farmers’ market: – “It is hard, so hard! If I ever save a cent, I then have to go hungry! They think I’m fat – but it’s only rheumatism.”