The 20th Book Fair took place at Cankarjev dom art centre in Ljubljana
As the 20th Book Fair officially opened at Cankarjev dom art centre on Tuesday, 30 November, a number of awards were presented by the Publishers' Association. Milan Matos, the CEO of the Mladinska knjiga publisher, was presented the highest award for his contributions in publishing.
The awarded debut work, the novel "Od blizu" ("From Up Close"), was written by Irena Svetek, and the award for the best young translator went to Borut Krasevec for the translation of Viktor Pelevin's "Chapaiev i pustota" ("Chapaiev and the Void").
In addition, the awards for the best book design and for printing were also conferred at the gala opening event.
The jury of the Association of Publishers and Booksellers at the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Slovenia conferred the Schwentner Award for significant contributions to the development of publishing and book selling on Milan Matos, the chairman of the board of the major publisher Mladinska knjiga.
Matos has been with the publishing house since 1971 and is responsible for 30 years of successful running of the Svet knjige book club. In the 1980s, he worked in direct sales and became the manager of Mladinska knjiga in 1992, turning it into the biggest Slovenian publishing house. Matos's motto is: "I believe in the book, we live for it and from it."
The winner of the best debut award, Irena Svetek, was known to the literary audience for her short stories and her talks with famous authors at literary readings before publishing her novel "Od blizu".
The novel, published by the Studentska zalozba publishing house, showcases a first person short life episode with no fatal twists, a minimalistic human story, told with literary intensity that intertwines with excerpts from childhood and leads to an expected but nevertheless moving turnabout.
The Association of Slovenian Literary Translators conferred Borut Krasevec the award for best young translator for his work on Viktor Pelevin's novel "Chapaiev i pustota".
Krasevec is a heterogeneous young translator who tackles literature as well as essayistic and scientific texts. In addition to contemporary Russian prose, he also translates philosophical and religiologic works.
The translated novel was published by the publisher Cankarjeva zalozba, while the original came out in 1997. Its author Viktor Pelevin is one of the most translated Russian writers.
Through his knowledge about the Russian 20th century history, Krasevec had to introduce to the Slovenian reader the vast classical as well as modern Russian prose. He successfully adapted to the classical Russian storytelling and the philosophical dialogue of phenomenology and Japanese philosophy, and tackled diverse linguistic registers in the process.
The awards for best book design were conferred on the following publishers in five different categories: Sanje for literature and the novel "Idiot" by Dostojevski (designer Polonca Strman), Mladinska knjiga for children's literature and the book "Little Night Cake with Flames" by Toon Tellegen (illustrated by Suzi Bricelj), the Faculty of Letters publishing for scientific literature and the monograph "Eighty Years of Archeology Studies" (designer Robert Zvokelj), Rokus for non-fiction and the book "Slovenian Wines" by Julij Nemanic (designer Zare Kerin), and Karantanija for artistic monographs and the book "Pastoral" by Janez Bogataj (designer Radovan Jenko).
A number of awards for the printing of a book, called the Winged Lion Award, were also conferred on different printers, among them the grand Winged Lion, which went to the Mladinska knjiga printing house for the realisation of the book "Iconotheca Valvasoriana".
Source: Slovene Press Agency STA