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200-sqm country stand / Programme featuring renowned Ukrainian authors / Illustration exhibition and multimedia projects

Thanks to an alliance of numerous institutions, Ukraine will once again have a sizeable presence at Frankfurter Buchmesse. From 18 to 22 October 2023, the Ukrainian Book Institute, Goethe-Institut, Mystetskyi Arsenal (Art Arsenal) and the Ukrainian Institute will showcase Ukraine’s publishing and cultural landscape at the book fair in Frankfurt. The programme of events will bring renowned Ukrainian authors, translators and intellectuals together on the fair’s international stages to exchange views.

On 18 October at 11:00 am, speakers Olena Odynoka (Deputy Director of the Ukraine Book Institute), Fabian Mühlthaler (Director of Goethe-Institut Ukraine), Yuliia Kozlovets (General Coordinator of the International Book Arsenal Festival), Volodymyr Sheiko (Director of the Ukrainian Institute) and Peter Kraus vom Cleff (Managing Director of the German Publishers & Booksellers Association) will come together at Ukraine’s country stand (Hall 4.1 B 82) to discuss the issues which have become particularly acute as a result of Russia’s war of aggression.

Under the motto “The Fragility of Existence”, the programme will focus on the vulnerability and destruction of nature and the environment in times of war. The stand will have its own stage which will feature daily events in English and German.

In addition to discussions about the current situation in Ukraine, visitors will also learn about Ukrainian culture, book design and book art. Authors and guests will include Iryna Tsilyk, Maksym Yakovlyev, Kateryna Mikhalitsyna, Anna Novosad, Yuliia Kozlovets, Alona Karavai, Vakhtang Kebuladze, Svitlana Oslavska, Oksana Zabuzhko, Yaryna Chornohuz and many others.

Additional topics will be “War and Reading”, “Women’s Voices from Ukraine to the World”, “Nuances of Translating: Literature Centered Around War” and “Creative Europe: Opportunities for Ukrainian Publishers”.

On Wednesday, Chytomo, the Ukrainian online magazine for books and culture, will award a new prize for excellence in publishing.

“Presence vs. Absence”

Mystetskyi Arsenal (Hall 3.1 J 103) will present the work of Ukrainian photographer Andrii Denysenko under the motto “Presence vs. Absence”. The exhibition will shed light on the daily life of volunteers in the village of Kolychivka in the Chernihiv region, who helped rebuild local houses. As early as February 2022, Mystetskyi Arsenal began exploring works by Ukrainian artists that have dealt with Russia’s war against Ukraine from 2014 until the present.

Illustration exhibition “When Everything Matters”

Pictoric and the International Book Arsenal Festival will present the international illustration exhibition “When Everything Matters” on the Agora. The exhibition was first seen during the 11th International Book Arsenal Festival, which took place in Kyiv in June 2023. It will showcase new works by leading Ukrainian and international artists.

Multimedia projects on Ukraine

Two multimedia projects at THE ARTS+ stand (Hall 4.1 H 36) organised by the Ukrainian Institute will present Ukrainian culture past and present. The focus will be on the war’s devastating impact on art. A curated selection of art books will also be on display. The stand is part of Frankfurter Buchmesse’s THE ARTS+ platform, which serves as an interface between the publishing industry and creative sector. 

Discover Ukraine: Bits Destroyed will immerse viewers in Ukraine’s monumental art of the 1960s and 1970s. The animated project will feature images of 56 mosaics by Alla Horska, Hryhorii Pryshedko, Halyna Zubchenko and other Ukrainian artists. More than one quarter of these works have been damaged or destroyed since Russia first invaded the country. The installation was created by the Ukrainian Institute and Rock ’n’ Light Studio based on documentary photographs by Yevgen Nikiforov.    

Insight.UA is a digital guide that covers a range of topics: music, literature, theatre, cinema, visual arts, thrillers and analytics. The platform invites users to explore Ukrainian culture in various formats – from a selection of Ukrainian films, exhibitions and books to playlists.

German and Ukrainian Book and Literary Industries in Dialogue

Most appearances by Ukrainian participants at this year’s Frankfurter Buchmesse will take place within the framework of the project “German and Ukrainian Book and Literary Industries in Dialogue”, which is funded by Germany’s Minister of State for Culture and the Media. The project is using a series of individual projects to support the work of  Ukrainian authors, publishers and media professionals and to promote knowledge and understanding in Germany of Ukraine’s culture and history. The project is being carried out by the German Publishers & Booksellers Association in close cooperation with Frankfurter Buchmesse and the Ukrainian Book Institute, as well as with the Ukrainian cultural institution Mystetskyi Arsenal, the online magazine for books and culture Chytomo and Goethe-Institut Ukraine.

In addition, there is the Special Programme for Publishers from Ukraine and neighbouring countries: an intensive training and networking programme for publishers, editors, licensing managers and literary agents. On site, the programme consists of a one-day seminar with German experts, followed by participation in the official opening of Frankfurter Buchmesse and numerous international networking opportunities until the Saturday of the Fair. This promotional programme is supported by the Federal Foreign Office of the Federal Republic of Germany and curated and organised by the Frankfurter Buchmesse GmbH in cooperation with the International Book Arsenal Festival and the Goethe-Institut Ukraine.

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