A Clever Magazine of the Right

I found a rarity in Roma. Il Borghese was a uniquely well designed (particularly the covers) revista representing the right wing of Italian politics in the postwar period. Many talented illustrators, though unknown in the United States, contributed drawings and collages with a distinctly modern air. Named after the influential Borghese family, symbolizing the spirit of entrenched conservatism, the magazine is nonetheless reminiscent of some left wing underground papers of the ’60s.

This cover and the advert for Vespa (below) reveal the wit and light-hearted yet sophisticated visual character that made Il Borghese such a popular journal throughout the 1950s, before devolving in the ’60s through ’80s into bawdy satire.

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