There will be both national and local projects celebrating the Prince of Poets: debates, exhibitions, performaces, international scentific conference. Information on all the projects will be available from a special website, www.herbert2008.pl. A list of members of the Organizing Committee.
The Year of Zbigniew Herbert
has been declared by the Sejm [lower house of parliament] on the 10th anniversary of the death of one of the greatest Polish poets.
An excerpt from the Resolution:
"In an age of crisis of values and painful despair, he stood firmly by his principles: in art - the canon of beauty, hierarchy, and craftsmanship, in life - codes of ethics clearly distinguishing between good and evil. [...] To the Polish language he brought a formula-commandment - the words "Badz wierny Idz / Be faithful Go".
The motto of the YEAR is the quotation "We mnie jest płomień, który myśli / Inside me is a flame which thinks"
from the poem NAPIS / INSCRIPTION.
Co-ordination of the most important projects has been entrusted to the Biblioteka Narodowa / National Library
in Warsaw, where the legacy of the author of MR. COGITO has been housed since December 2006.
There will be both national and local projects celebrating the Prince of Poets. Information on all the projects will be available from a special website, www.herbert2008.pl.
The central events prepared by the National Library in the YEAR OF HERBERT include: Herbertian Debates
The National Library (Palace of the Republic, Plac Krasińskich in Warsaw) will hold 10 monthly Herbertian Debates. The debates will be open to the general public, and will be devoted to different aspects of the poet's life and work, including the reception of his works in Europe, his fascination with antiquity, his travels, his attachment to traditional patriotism, his involvement in political and social matters, his spirituality etc. The primary aim of the debates is to continue Herbert's thought - invited panellists will explore the topics and themes which were especially close to Herbert's heart: "Herbert-Norwid" exhibition
1st debate - 27 February 2008, Herbert a polskość / Herbert and Polishness 2nd debate - 12 March 2008, Czy poeta może być filozofem? / Can a poet be a philosopher? 3rd debate - 9 April 2008, Celan czy Eliot? / Celan or Eliot?4th debate - 28 May 2008, Czy poetę trzeba wygnać z państwa? / Does a poet have to be driven out of the state?5th debate - 11 June 2008, Dokąd prowadzi Hermes? / Where is Hermes leading?6th debate - 10 September 2008, Skąd te głosy? Herbert w teatrze / Where are the voices coming from? Herbert in theatre7th debate - 10 September 2008, Duchowa geografia Europy / The spiritual geography of Europe - the debate has been cancelled8th debate - 15 October 2008, Czemu wyraz sztuka daje? / What does art express? Debate with an exhibition of paintings inspired by Herbert's life and work9th debate - 12 November 2008, Literatura i metafizyka / Literature and metaphysics10th debate - 3 December 2008, Kochanowski czy Słowacki? / Kochanowski or Słowacki?
This exhibition, held under the patronage of the Polish President, is the first presentation of drawings by Cyprian Kamil Norwid and Zbigniew Herbert from the National Library collection. The exhibition will be on display at the Palace of the Republic (Plac Krasińskich 3/5) in April and May 2008 (April 26 - May 17, 2008, every day 10:00 am - 6:00 pm). It will also be open to the public during the May Night of Museums (May 17/18, 2008), an event prepared by the Warsaw City Administration. Open-air performance on the anniversary of Herbert's death
On 26 July 2008, two days before the 10th anniversary of the poet's death, there will be a several-hour outdoor performance and a multimedia show on the façade of the Palace of the Republic, Plac Krasińskich in Warsaw. International scientific conference
A three-day international scientific conference has been prepared for 11-12 December 2008, two years after the National Library received the poet's legacy, organized by the National Library, the Institute of Literary Research of the Polish Academy of Sciences, and the Book Institute, devoted to Herbert and in particular to the reception of his work in Poland and other countries of Central and Eastern Europe (including Lithuania, Ukraine, Hungary, Germany, etc.), Western Europe, and America. Monographic exhibition
This exhibition will be opened in conjunction with the international scientific conference in December 2008, and will present - for the first time - the Zbigniew Herbert Archive now housed in the National Library. The exhibition will be accompanied by a presentation of the "Zbigniew Herbert Archive Inventory". Starting from December 2008, the Herbert collection will gradually start being made available to literary researchers. Performance at the National Theatre ending the Year of Zbigniew Herbert
The premiere of a full-length production based on Herbert's poetry and directed by Piotr Cieplak has been planned for December 2008 at the Teatr Narodowy (National Theatre). The show will remain in the theatre's regular repertoire.
Other planned projects:
- The exhibition "PODRÓŻE PANA COGITO" / "THE TRAVELS OF MR. COGITO" prepared by Warsaw's Adam Mickiewicz Museum of Literature (17 March - 5 October 2008)
- PORA POEZJI / POETRY SEASON - a cyclic project of the Book Institute, this year dedicated to the work of Herbert (28 May - 1 June, 2008)
- "HERBERTIADA" 9th National Review of the Work of Zbigniew Herbert in Kołobrzeg (September 2008)
- PORA PROZY / PROSE SEASON - a cyclic project of the Book Institute, this year dedicated to the work of Herbert (15 October - 18 October, 2008)
- HERBERT programme of the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage
Many local and community initiatives will take place in the YEAR OF HERBERT. They will be supported by a special programme of the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage (MKiDN) called "Herbert", co-ordinated on behalf of the ministry by the National Library.
Under the programme, supplementary funding will be provided to the best projects celebrating the poet's life and work, disseminating and popularising his output. The programme will support various publications, scientific and popular conferences, exhibitions, workshops, literary meetings, trips, media and multimedia programmes, competitions, stage productions of his plays and shows based on his poetry, and also research initiatives and biographical and bibliographical publications.
Funds from the programme will be available to local governments, national and local public cultural institutions, state archives, churches and religious communities, primary and secondary state and non-state artistic schools as well as artistic university-level schools, state and non-state schools of higher learning, nongovernmental organizations, and business entities not included in the public finance sector.
Specialist and organizational supervision of the planned events will be provided by the Organizing Committee chaired by the Minister of Culture and National Heritage, Bogdan Zdrojewski.
The Committee also includes:
- Joanna Cicha - deputy director, National Heritage Department, MKiDN
- Henryk Citko - manager, Zbigniew Herbert Archive, National Library
- Krzysztof Dudek - director, National Centre for Culture
- Prof. Michał Kleiber - president, Polish Academy of Sciences
- Dr Krzysztof Koehler - director, TVP Kultura
- Dr Jacek Kopciński - editor-in-chief, "Teatr" monthly
- Prof. Jacek Łukasiewicz - professor, University of Wrocław
- Dr Tomasz Makowski - director, National Library (the Committee's deputy chairman)
- Tomasz Merta - undersecretary of state, MKiDN
- Igor Michalski - director, Wojciech Bogusławski Theatre in Kalisz
- Katarzyna Pechman - artistic director, "Herbertiada"
- Maria Dorota Pieńkowska - custodian, Adam Mickiewicz Museum of Literature
- Dr Małgorzata Ptasińska-Wójcik - deputy director, Adam Mickiewicz Museum of Literature
- Stanisław Radwan - composer
- Dr Magdalena Ślusarska - historian
- Zbigniew Zapasiewicz - actor
- Dr Rafał Żebrowski - historian, Zbigniew Herbert's nephew
Information provided by:
Biblioteka Narodowa - 1 February 20082008: The Year of Zbigniew Herbert - back to the page