Пише Писанки Бабуня, Пише Мама, Пишу Я

(My Grandmother Writes Pysanky, My Mother Writes Pysanky, and So Do I)

Author: Софійка та Марта Зєлик (Sofiyka and Marta Zielyк)

Format:  Softcover paperback

Pages:  48          

Language:  Ukrainian/English (bilingual)

Illustrations:  many, color

Publisher:  ДіПоР  (Kyiv, Ukraine, 1992)

Availability: Out of print

Acquired:  Ukraine

This lovely little gem of a book was printed in Ukraine shortly after Ukrainian independence, and was a family project.  Sofiyka Zielyk, and American-born pysankarka, created the pysanky, Marta Zielyk wrote the text, and Lyubomyr took the photos.

The title of the book is taken from the first line of a well-known children’s poem, which you can read here.

The first section of this book is a gallery of traditional pysanky. They are photographed in natural, artistic settings (see cover above), named, and organized by region.  There is a good, representative sampling of designs.  The page below gives examples of pysanky from Polissia.

There follows a short section on “How to Make Pysanky, with text and photos, and then a very basic section on symbolism, with text and several pages of drawings of symbols.

It is a lovely book and a nice effort.  There are only two minuses: first, the quality of the paper (and printing) is not the best, reflecting the period in which it was printed; second, while most of the blocks of text are translated (and, generally, fairly well), the names of the regions and the pysanky are not.  The latter might be a problem for the non-Ukrainian speaking reader. 


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