The CHF staged very well visited round tables with nine literary programmes that included the participation of fifteen authors, editors and publishers such as Stjepan Blažetin (Pécs), Tomislav Žigmanov, Slaven Bačić, Katarina Čeliković (Subotica), this years CHF laureate publicist Petar Tyran (Vienna), Ljerka Totch Naumova (Skopje), Vladimir Jakopanec (Melbourne) and others.
The four specialised Interliber fairs wrapped up at the Zagreb Grand Fairgrounds on November 17th – the book and teaching aids fair, the music and multimedia fair, Inova and Infogamer – drawing many visitors, with the organisers estimating about 100 thousand visits over the six days of Interliber.
Over 240 publishers exhibited at the 36th Interliber, the organisers announced. Among the exhibitors was the Croatian Heritage Foundation, which successfully presented the publishing activity of Croatian minority communities from twelve Central and Southeast European countries including Austria, Bulgaria, Montenegro, the Czech Republic, Italy, Kosovo, Hungary, Macedonia, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia and Serbia.
CHF director Marin Knezović MSc noted at the presentation that this was a part of the Croatian cultural mainstream, introducing new value to Croatian cultural heritage. “These are the values of one’s own particular experience – the experience of being part of a Croatian minority – from which we can all learn a great deal,” said Knezović. Emigrant literary production is, however, often perceived as being of lesser value, and the purpose of the CHF is to counter these erroneous and damaging perceptions, he added.
The exhibit of the publishing activity of Croatian emigrant communities, Croatian minority communities and the Croatians of Bosnia-Herzegovina was financially supported by the City of Zagreb department for culture, education and sport.
A dominant place in the exhibition was justly reserved for the three most productive publishers of specialist monographs: the Gradišće Croat Institute of Sciences in Austria’s Trajštof (Trausdorf), the Hungarian Croatian Institute of Sciences in Pécs, and the Institute for the Culture of Vojvodina Croatians of Subotica.
The experts, authors and enthusiasts active in the frame of these organisations in Austria, Hungary and Serbia – judging by the interest of professionals, the media and visitors – can only be applauded for the quality of their publications.
Numerous new publications were presented during the fair, lectures were held and workshops organised at the stage in Pavilion 6. The Croatian Heritage Foundation staged very well visited round tables with nine literary programmes that included the participation of fifteen authors, editors and publishers such as Stjepan Blažetin (Pécs), Tomislav Žigmanov, Slaven Bačić, Katarina Čeliković (Subotica), this years CHF laureate publicist Petar Tyran (Vienna), Ljerka Totch Naumova (Skopje), Vladimir Jakopanec (Melbourne) and others.Many book promotions and guest appearances at exhibit stalls were also organised, such as the CHF’s books matinee at which translator and Hispanic Croatica expert Željka Lovrenčić DSc, advisor on this year’s CHF Croatian Books Abroad project from Zagreb’s Croatian Studies faculty Professor Sanja Vulić DSc, writer and diplomat Tuga Tarle and writer and editor with the publisher AGM Grozdana Cvitan appeared. AGM is co-publisher with the CHF of a series of young writing stars from the emigrant communities such as Jagoda Marinić, Morgan Yasbincek and of the recently translated and published novel El Viento En Un País Que Se Fue (The Wind In A Country That Was) by Chilean writer of Croatian extraction Oscar Andrés Barrientos Bradasic. The star of this year’s Interliber was Adam Johnson, winner of the 2013 Pulitzer Prize for fiction for The Orphan Master’s Son, published locally by Školska Knjiga. He was on hand for the fair for a book signing. It was also announced at Interliber that this year’s winner of the Kiklop Award for Lifetime Achievement was Milivoj Solar, who will receive the award at a presentation ceremony this December at the book fair in Pula.
Journalist and writer Predrag Lucić is the recipient of this year’s Kočićevo Pero Award conferred by the Petar Kočić Endowment of Banja Luka. Petar Tyran received the Croatian Heritage Foundation Commendation for his work as a publicist on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of his editorship of Hrvatske novine (Croatian News) – the most widely read weekly among the Croatians of Gradišće (Burgenland).
This year’s Interliber drew thousands of visitors and the exhibition pavilions were packed with people who had come to browse and buy books, priced well below their bookstore value. There were in particular many young people as schools organised visits by children, and there were those who have waited the whole year to take advantage of the fair’s discounted prices for books they were eager to acquire.
550 innovations from 32 countries were showcased at the 38th INOVA Croatian International Innovation Salon and at the 9th Exhibition of Innovation, Prototypes and Student Business Plans, with the best reaping INOVA awards and prizes.
Besides at Interliber there was also a massive turnout for Infogamer by Reboot, staged in Pavilion 8, which proved too small to receive all those interested, above all young visitors who came to try their gaming skills at over 100 computer consoles.
Text by: Vesna Kukavica