Decorative Hangers in Lviv’s Courtyards

These intriguing metal fixtures are a common sight in many of Lviv’s courtyards. They are decorative hangers integrated into the ironwork of the galleries’ banisters. Historically, they served for drying, brushing, and airing out coats. Another theory suggests they may have been used for hanging plants or flowers. Similar hangers […]

Read More

Janusz Majewski (1931-2024): King of Bittersweet Nostalgia

An interview with the celebrated film director Janusz Majewski, who died on 10th January aged 92, was one of the last of the old guard of Polish directors who emerged in the 1950s. He was part of a generation of filmmakers that put Poland firmly on the cinematic map. ‘He […]

Architectural Celebration and Financial Security: How the Dnister Insurance Company Appeared in Lviv

From Lokalna Istoriya – text and photographs by Yuliya Korytska-Holub, original in Ukrainian The building of the Dnister Insurance Company, situated at the corner of Pidvalna and Ruska streets in Lviv, has been considered a gem of the city since its inception. Recent renovations have only heightened its elegance, though not without […]

Lederer & Popper Photomontage Postcards of Galicia and Beyond

I love looking at old photographs of Galician cities and towns, especially postcards with city views. A real treat among these are photomontages — postcard collages. I first came across montage postcards depicting Lviv and was particularly struck by the one with a woman who had fallen from her bicycle. […]

Searching for Sunflowers in the Architecture of Lviv and Kraków

In the first couple months of the full-scale war (after being displaced from Lviv and living in Poland), searching for sunflowers in the architectural detail of Kraków became a way to soothe my soul, to find solidarity with Ukraine during those highly uncertain and volatile times. Each time I would […]

Wartime Lviv in Photos: A Look at the Measures to Protect Citizens and Architectural Heritage

Today marks one year since the start of Russia’s full-scale war against Ukraine. One year since I packed a backpack and left for the Polish border, not knowing when or if I would ever return to my home in Lviv. So much can be said about the last year, the […]

Fire Marks from the Kraków Mutual Insurance Society

Shortly before the full-scale war started, I was working on an article about fire insurance companies that worked in Lviv (Lwów / Lemberg) in Austrian times. Thanks to this, I had learned about the Kraków Mutual Insurance Society and knew that their former headquarters still stood in Kraków. Thus some […]

The Lost Jewish Cemeteries of Lviv

While many old Jewish cemeteries still remain around Galicia, the same cannot be said of the Jewish burial grounds in Lviv (Lemberg / Lwów). Only found fragments of their ancient tombstones (matzevah) — which were used by the Nazis and Soviets as pavement and building material — remind us of […]

‘Obezpechyla Azienda’: Lviv’s Prewar Ukrainian-Language Fire Mark

I started working on this article in February 2022, shortly before the war started and before I ended up in Kraków for several months. *** Every day I walk to work across Lviv’s Old Town, passing Rynok Square right in front of the city hall building, down Ruska Street, then […]

Finding Solidarity with Ukraine: 12 Ways Kraków and Lviv Are Connected via Their Historical Built Environment

Kraków has become my temporary wartime home. When Russia began it full-scale invasion of Ukraine on February 24, 2022, I made the difficult decision to leave my home in Lviv and depart for Poland. I didn’t know how long I would be gone or where I would end up; but […]

Ukrainian Societies in Galicia: Boyan

Name: BoyanType: Choral and musical societyGoal: To support the development of Ukrainian musical culture and choral singing; to offer music education and music printingFirst society founded: In Lviv by Ruska Besida, in particular by Anatol VakhnianynYears active: 1891 until WWII In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, several societies […]