Promotion of Literature in Translation Internships - Ukraine

June 2014
From May 28 to June 04, 2014 Grigory Semenchuk, Ukrainian poet, musician and program director of the Lviv International Literary Festival, visited the Book Festival BRAK in Bratislava, had professional meetings with Slovak partners and made a business trip to Krakow.

Grigory describes his internship: "For me it was very important to get acquainted with future participants of the festival in Lviv, to discuss the format of cooperation with partners in Krakow and Bratislava and to get to know about the peculiarities of Slovak literary process. It was also very useful to get new contacts, to arrange visits of Slovak and Polish writers to the Lviv International Literary Festival (what is highly important for our main territorial focus of the festival – Danube Lounge). In addition, it was useful to improve professional skills of creating a database of translations for the Book Institute in Krakow".

The internship included a large number of activities. It started with participation in the event "Creative Morning: Ukraine". Together with the art studio "Agrafka" and the moderator Erik Šimšíkthe intern spoke about the influence of war on contemporary art. Grigory Semenchuk had meetings with many people especially important for cooperation between Ukraine and Slovakia, namely coordinator of the Literature Information CentreIna Martinova, and director of the Centre Myroslava Valkova, organizers of the BRAK festival, Slovak writers Veronika Sikulova, Marosh Knajnak, Pavol Rankov, Polish writer Ziemowit Sczerek. In Krakow he met the head and the project manager of the Villa Decius Assosiation and discussed the potential participation of grant holders of Villa in the festival in Lviv, namely Belarusian and Polishparticipants and presentation of the updated electronic version of the RADAR periodical. Another result of the visit is the arrangement about the participation of Liavon Borshchevskyy, Belarusian writer and dissident, grant holder of Villa in the Lviv Publishers' Forum. Grigory Semenchuk also had the meeting with main programme partners of the festival, Book Institute in Krakow represented by the executive director Ewa Wojciechowska. They spoke about the cooperation in September and the representation and creation of a portal – a database of Ukrainian writers with translations of their works into other languages. As a result of the meeting the Institute agreed to support the visit of four Polish writers to the Forum: Andrzej Stasiuk, Manuela Gretkowska,Dorota Maslowska, Justyna Sobolewska.

Besides, in Krakow the intern had the meeting with managers of the Krakow Festival Office, with whom he discussed presentation of Krakow as City of Literature UNESCO at the Lviv International Literary Festival and presentation of Lviv as City of Literature at the Krakow Book Festival and the Conrad Festival in October 2014.

The practical result of Grigory Semenchuk's internship - which became possible thanks to the Book Platform project - will be the visit of 12 participants from Slovakia and 6 participants from Poland to the 9th Lviv International Literary Festival. There is also the arrangement for long-term cooperation between the Slovak Illustrators Association ASIL and NGO Publishers' Forum.

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