A poet, literary and music critic, and fiction writer; he has been nominated for the Nike'98 and '99 Award. He has won the Koscielski Prize in 1999.
He graduated from Polish philology at the Jagielloński University (1991), between 1998 and 2001 he was an editor of the Studium magazine, which no longer exists. In 2001 he received the Kościelscy Prize, and in 2008 the Gdynia Literary Award for the book Pensum. He has been nominated for the Nike Award three times (1998, 1999, 2005).
Wiedemann attempted many artistic activities. He translated from Ukrainian, Slovenian and English, a few times he exhibited his paintings and drawings. He wrote a column about music for Res Publica Nowa and The Diary of the Soul in Przekrój weekly.
Wiedemann's world is a chaotic and uncertain reality, full of random events that cannot be fully understood, explained, included in a comprehensive plan or a unified vision of reality. In Wiedemann's stories, The Omnipresence of Order, fragments of the world become autonomous and the narrative deliberately lacks any distinct 'point'. It seems as if a random part of everyday reality has been torn free and permitted to exist on its own. However, Wiedemann's work suggests not only a jest or creative overindulgence here but also concentration, an effort to seek out – from among the chaotic multiplicity of events – facts and the observation of some sort of sense, or at least an acknowledgement of its importance as an element of reality. Wiedemann does not avoid exaggeration while observing the everyday world. The simplest and lowest activities or events (a bladder infection or the extraction of a tooth) enjoy equal status with elite components of high culture, such as classical music.
In the 1990s Wiedemann was often seen more as a prose writer than as a poet, which is reflected in Nike nominations – he gained his first two for collections of short stories (Sęk Pies Brew in 1999, Wszędobylstwo w Porządku in 1998). His prose has been connected to the so-called 'banalism' – literature which shows simple situations, attempting to ease narrative tension rather than to compositional effect. The term was proposed by Paweł Dunin-Wąsowicz, but Arkadiusz Morawiec argued that this classification is made impossible by the self-stylisation of the main protagonist and narrator as an intellectual and some signals of sublimity.
As a curiosity, it might be added that the seemingly absurd title of the Sęk Pies Brew (Knot Dog Eyebrow, trans. AP) collection of short stories is a Polish phonetic approximation of the French cinq pièces brèves (five short stories).
Wojciech Kuczok wrote of Sceny Łóżkowe (Bed Scenes, trans. AP ; the provocative title refers to a book of dreams) as follows:
At the end of the 20th century, Adam Wiedemann’s prose refreshed the poetics of sure-realism. In his Sceny Łóżkowe, he employs oneiric sure-realism: in dreams, all that is unreal is obvious. The author seems to have mastered writing down dreams in their pure state undistorted by the awareness of being awake. Additionally, he keeps smiling in his sleep, and the smile is particularly contagious.
Even though Kuczok imitates Wiedemann’s mocking tone in his coinage, in fact, he touches upon an issue which is important to the poet’s entire oeuvre. The feeling of obviousness – perhaps stemming from overlooking the world in the poems or more subtle characteristics of his style – is an apt description of his works. Paweł Mościcki describes Wiedemann’s Odpowiadania (Retort Stories, trans. AP) published in 2012:
The wager of Wiedemann’s writing long seems to be the ability to transform genres in prose and poetry into something more, which would be able to convey more than his everyday life. The substance encodes a different story while still remaining simple, commonplace, and light. The transformation, which doesn’t violate the essence of the initial matter, is quite successful (Dwutygodnik, 02/2012).
Wiedemann’s book of poetry Dywan (Rug, trans. AP) was nominated for the Gdynia Literary Award, and his second book, Z Ruchem (With Motion, trans. AP) for the Silesius Poetry Award. The latter, a collection of 35 poems illustrated with the poet’s photos (blurry portraits and seemingly random shots taken from a train) was thus described by Michał Szymański:
Wiedemann is unconcerned with elevating everydayness or deprecating the sacrum. He does not care about shifting meanings or changing vectors of values. He is outside of records which organise the reflection of 20th-century Polish poetry. What’s important is the transformation itself, the primeval movement which is not possible to be depicted in its pure form, and the metaphysical surplus released with it. This is why his poems are destined for a prepared reader who will patiently render them, play them out in their head without relying on an interpretative epiphany.
In 2016, Wiedemann released his next book of poetry, Metro na Żerań (Metro Line to Żerań, trans. AP). Kinga Dunin described the book:
The poems are about the way the lyrical subject falls in a dead end only to get back on track because somehow, he still likes it (Osobiście Uważam, że… [Personally, I think…, trans. AP], Krytyka Polityczna).
- Samczyk (Male) (poems), Obserwator, Poznań 1996;
- Bajki zwierzęce (Animal Fables) (poems), Pomona, Wrocław 1997;
- Wszędobylstwo porządku (The Omnipresence of Order), Studium/Zielona Sowa, Kraków 1998;
- Rozrusznik (Starter Motor), WL, Kraków 1998;
- Sęk Pies Brew, W.A.B, Warszawa 1998;
- Konwalia (Lily of the Valley), Biuro Literackie, Legnica 2001;
- Kalipso, Prószyński i S-ka, Warszawa 2004 (nomination for the Nike award);
- Sceny łóżkowe, Korporacja Ha!art, Kraków 2005;
- Pensum , Wojewódzka Biblioteka Publiczna, Centrum Animacji Kultury w Poznaniu Poznań 2007;
- Filtry, Staromiejski Dom Kultury, Warszawa 2008;
- Czyste czyny, Wojewódzka Biblioteka Publiczna, Centrum Animacji Kultury w Poznaniu, Poznań 2009;
- Dywan, Wojewódzka Biblioteka Publiczna i Centrum Animacji Kultury w Poznaniu, Poznań 2010 (nomination for Gdynia award);
- Z ruchem, Wojewódzka Biblioteka Publiczna i Centrum Animacji Kultury w Poznaniu, Poznań 2014 (nomination for the Silesius Award);
- Metro na Żerań, Wojewódzka Biblioteka Publiczna i Centrum Animacji Kultury w Poznaniu, Poznań 2016.
Source: www.polska2000.pl, Copyright: Stowarzyszenie Willa Decjusza, updated by AP, February 2019.