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Italy will be the Guest of Honour of the 2024 edition of the Warsaw International Book Fair

Italy will be the Guest of Honour of the Warsaw International Book Fair, organized on May 23-26, 2024, at the Palace of Culture and Science and the adjacent Plac Defilad. The Italian programme, with the motto “Ci vuole un fiore” (“It takes a flower”), offers ample opportunity to explore the richness of contemporary Italian literature and meet Italian authors and publishers.

“Italy will be at the center of this year edition, with a rich series of events: more than 20 meetings, including lectures, conversations and round table discussions, which will give the Polish public the opportunity to meet some of the most acclaimed Italian contemporary writers, along with some emerging voices. It will be an extraordinary chance to learn about the richness and diversity of our literary culture and to promote it.”, says H.E. Luca Franchetti Pardo, Italian Ambassador to Warsaw.

“Furthermore, thanks to the events featuring publishing houses, workers in the sector and agents, the Fair will be a great opportunity for the Italian publishing industry to present its offer to a market of 40 million people who have a deep and genuine interest, nearly a thirst, for Italian culture in all of its forms. Poland is the third country in the world for acquisition of translations rights of Italian works: a significant number which makes the publishing industry a leading sector in the trade exchange between Italy and Poland, not only in the cultural field, but also in the commercial one. 

The chosen slogan to represent the Italian participation in the Fair is “It takes a flower” (“Ci vuole un fiore”), based on the title of a famous Gianni Rodari’s poem, put to music by Sergio Endrigo: a sentence which summarizes the deep and inseparable relation between human being, natural environment and the planet. It is about topics that are bound to become a priority in the years to come, and that will require a total commitment for a sustainable and equitable development.”, Ambassador Franchetti Pardo concludes.

The Guest of Honour stand, hosting Italian publishers, authors and other literary and cultural icons, will be located in the Marble Hall (No. 133). The Fair will be attended by twelve Italian publishing houses representing various segments of the publishing market: Mondadori Libri, Reggio Children – International Centre for the defence and promotion of the rights and potential of all children, EurArte Editions, Il Saggiatore, Lavieri Edizioni, San Paolo Edizioni Srl, Il Castoro, White Star, Erickson, Hoepli, Il Pozzo di Giacobbe and Gallucci Editore.

More than twenty authors will come to Warsaw. The rich and varied agenda of events dedicated to Italian culture and literature will include meetings with authors, literary debates, market discussions, and the all-favourite autograph sessions. Meetings with Italian authors (with translation into Polish) will be held at the Palace of Culture and Science in Goethe, Kiev and Kisielewski Halls, as well as on the Main Stage, Pavilion F, at Plac Defilad (in front of the Kinoteka).

The Italian programme at the Warsaw International Book Fair will be kicked off by Carlo Gallucci and Gaia Stock, who publish children’s literature, with a discussion inspired by “Ci vuole un fiore”. During four days of the Fair, Warsaw will welcome Italian prose writers and poets, authors of children’s books, philosophers, literary and religious studies scholars, historians, journalists, masters of illustration and translation. The list of literary stars and popular artists from Italy includes Pietro Luca Azzaro, Alessandro Baldacci, Luigi Ballerini, Alessandro Barbero, Massimo Borghesi, Alessandro Campi, Andrea Colamedici, Mattia Corrente, Carlo Gallucci, Maura Gancitano, Helena Janeczek, Federica Manzon, Michele Marchitto, Luigi Marinelli, Laura Pugno, Stefano Redaelli, Antonio Riccardi, Davide Rondoni, Gaia Stock and Matteo Strukul.

All those who want to learn more about Italian publishing market should attend the meeting with Bruno Giancarli (EN/PL), from the Research Department of the Italian Publishers Association, who will talk about Italian publishing world in facts and figures.

To see the detailed agenda of literary and market events with participation of Italian creators, and to learn more about guests from Italy, make sure to visit targiksiazkiwarszawa.pl (Guest of Honour tab).

In the lobby of Goethe Hall, the most beautiful book covers will be presented at the exhibition entitled “Italian stories. Italian fiction illustrated”. The exhibition aspires to showcase how Italian fiction is often entrusted to the interpretation of an illustrator – whether it be work of a writer who has already become a classic or a young promising author. The illustrators – Manuele Fior, Beppe Giacobbe, Andrea Serio, Mario Sughi and Elisa Talentino – are among the most beloved and inimitable contemporary cartoonists. They use a variety of techniques, from watercolour to digital painting, in a distinctive and recognizable style. The exhibition was created in collaboration with Associazione Flangini and is curated by Melania Gazzotti.

The Exhibitors’ Evening on the inauguration day will feature “Discover Italy through Song” – a concert by ITALIA FOLKSONGS performed by Daniele Di Bonaventura Band’Union
& Ilaria Pilar Patassini, which is a moving musical journey through the true sounds of the “Bel Paese”. Traditional melodies and dialects will return in a new, elegant and fascinating arrangement, with a tinge of jazz and folk.

Italy’s participation as a Guest of Honor country at the Warsaw International Book Fair is possible thanks to the following Italian institutions: the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, the Ministry of Culture, the Foreign Trade Promotion Agency ICE-ITA, the Centre for Books and Reading, which promotes the cultural program in collaboration with AIE – Italian Publishers Association. In Poland the project has been coordinated by the Italian Embassy, the Italian Cultural Institute in Warsaw and the ICE-ITA Office in Warsaw.

 

In anticipation of this event, the Memorandum of Understanding was signed at the Italian Embassy in Warsaw on 16 January 2024. During the ceremony, Italy was represented by H.E. Luca Franchetti Pardo, Italian Ambassador to Poland, and Polish representation was headed by Jacek Oryl, the Director of Warsaw International Book Fair, and Waldemar Michalski, the President of History and Culture Foundation, the organizer of the Fair.

Italian programme will be the highlight of this year’s Fair, featuring a rich and diverse agenda of book presentations and meetings with authors and publishing industry actors. It will be an excellent opportunity to promote Italian publishers and their work in Poland. “The Warsaw International Book Fair, presenting Italy as the Guest of Honour, is an extraordinary opportunity for Italian publishers to promote their offer to a population of 40 million people many of whom, as I have witnessed more than once, are deeply and genuinely interested in Italian culture in its many forms and aspects, and embrace it with enthusiasm”, said Ambassador Luca Franchetti Pardo.

In this context, we want to acknowledge excellent cooperation with and support from Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Italian Ministry of Culture (CEPELL Centre for Books and Reading), ICE-ITA Foreign Trade Promotion Agency and the Italian Publishers Association, as well as invaluable coordination generously provided in Poland by the Italian Embassy, the Italian Cultural Institute in Warsaw and the ICE-ITA Office in Warsaw.

The Warsaw International Book Fair is a leading cultural and publishing industry event in Poland, renowned and respected in Europe and beyond. This year’s edition of the Fair seems to be particularly interesting. There will be numerous events promoting Italian literature, festivals of comic, crime and children’s literature, thematic zones, international literary awards and prestigious competitions, as well as a number of industry events. The Fair boasts an international selection of exhibitors and artists, writers, translators, illustrators; it partners with key institutions and media that cover topics related to readership and culture; it is famous for its excellent location at the heart of Warsaw; and it proudly offers free admission to all visitors, together with online broadcasts of selected events.

The 2023 edition of the Warsaw International Book Fair was the biggest literary event of the year. It attracted nearly 500 exhibitors and hosted distinguished authors from Poland and fourteen other countries: Austria, Azerbaijan, China and Taiwan, France, Germany, Iceland, India, Italy, Norway, Romania, Slovakia, South Korea, Spain, and Ukraine as our 2023 Guest of Honour. Over the four days, nearly 800 events with approximately 1000 authors, translators, illustrators and industry actors were held. There was record-high attendance of more than 100,000 visitors.

The upcoming Warsaw International Book Fair will be held on May 23-26, 2024, at the Palace of Culture and Science and the adjacent Parade Square. Admission is free, and selected Fair events can be followed on the organizer’s social media.

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