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Switzerland becomes an inspiration for book readers in Siberia

In the heart of Siberia, the Krasnoyarsk Book Culture Fair also known as KRYAKK marked its ninth anniversary on October 28 – November 1, 2015.  One more time the scale and the number of events hosted within the festival have proven the international status of KRYAKK:  over 300 participants, representatives of intellectual elite from Russia, Europe and USA, 260 publishing houses, and around 55 thousand visitors made the book fair a significant landmark on the map of Russia.  Hundreds of thousands of book volumes exceeded the weight of 60 tons found their places on the territory of over 8000 m2 large venue in Siberia Expo Center.

KRYAKK main program consisted of over 200 professional and cultural events including literary and poetic meetings, master-classes, round tables, discussions, exhibits, theater performances, concerts and movie screenings united with the theme of travelling.

2015 became the third year for Pro Helvetia to partner with KRYAKK.  As always, this year Pro Helvetia together with Philosophicum Basel did their best in sharing the wide variety of Swiss literature and culture.  Apart from the Swiss booth where readers could find the books from all over Switzerland, the Swiss delegation of fourteen members ran the program of sixteen events demonstrating the cultural diversity of the country and addressing the young audiences.

Presentation of the renowned anthology of contemporary German-language drama “SHAG, 11+” for teenagers published in collaboration with Goethe Institut and the Austrian Cultural Forum had a special emphasis.

Staged by the one of the most promising theater directors of Russia Semyon ALexandrovskiy, theater readings and discussions of the play “Livia,13” written by Kristina Rinderknecht and performed by the actors of Krasnoyarsk drama theater deeply touched the young audiences and encouraged continuous discussions where spectators had the opportunity to address numerous vital issues to the author.

In collaboration with the International Commix Festival “Boomfest”, the Swiss commix artists Kati Rickenbach, Andrea Caprez, and Christoph Schuler prepared their own program which included series of captivating master classes where young participants mastered the art of drawing stories, exhibit of the works by Kati Rickenbach entitled “ The Summer of my Life” and featured right at the entrance gate of the book fair, and finally the unforgettable concert of live drawing full of sharp humor and warm attitude towards Krasnoyarsk during the final Museum Night.

Another incredibly popular Swiss star of KRYAKK, Roland Jurczok also known as Jurczok 1001 was among the main highlights of KRYAKK main program.  His workshop on the art of spoken word for Krasnoyarsk based poets resulted in a smashing poetic performance which turned out to be one of the key events of the Museum night.

Jurczok 1001, a singer, an author, a performer, and one of the pioneers of the art of spoken word in Switzerland, blew the audiences away at each of his three performances with his skillful use of new technologies, masterful poetic techniques and incredible mixes of multi vocal poetic tracks which have a lot in common with beat box and rap. He completely conquered the hearts of his Siberian listeners by performing his poems in Russian.

Swiss authors Catherine Lovey, Eleonora Frey, and Christina Rinderknecht presented their books and shared their expertise at the series of round tables and discussions providing the Swiss perspective on the number of challenging global issues.

Even though it might sound a little cut-and-dried, it is an absolute true that the Swiss participation in KRYAKK made a significant contribution into strengthening mutual understanding between Russia and Switzerland and opened new horizons and perspective for cooperation for all the participants which will result in the creation of new books, exchanges and stories turning into the one beautiful history line and investment into the future peace and prosperity of both nations.