"Hand in Hand Across the Border"; after the Frankfurt Book Fair
The Frankfurt Book Fair 2023 concluded on Sunday, October 22nd, with a focus on the European Capital of Culture, a title that Nova Gorica, in collaboration with Gorizia, will carry in 2025. At the closing ceremony of handing over the Roll of Honor to Italy in the Slovenian pavilion, the mayors of the two Gorizia cities, Samo Turel and Rodolfo Ziberna, also presented wines from the cross-border area, co-organized by the Slovenian Book Agency. The presentation of the Slovenian Roll of Honor to Italy reflects cooperation in our common cross-border area. The slogan GO! Borderless, which stands for borderless action and for the belief that much can be achieved by crossing borders and living together.
The Guest of Honor ceremony was the closing event of the Book Fair. Each year, the "guest scroll," an art object specially designed for the Frankfurt Book Fair, receives a new literary text engraved by the next Guest of Honor and is presented to the representative of the country that will be the next Guest of Honor. This year, after an address by Italian writer Ilaria Tuti and a conversation with Slovenian writer Dušan Jelinčič, the director of the Slovenian Book Agency, Katja Stergar, presented the guest scroll to Mauro Mazza, coordinator of Italy, who will be next year's Guest of Honor at the Frankfurt Book Fair. In her closing remarks, Director Stergar thanked all colleagues for their efforts, emphasized the success of Slovenia's presentation at the Book Fair, and highlighted the European Capital of Culture 2025, which will once again link Slovenia and Italy, as the title will be carried by Nova Gorica in cooperation with the neighboring city of Gorizia in Italy. "I am immensely grateful to the European Capital of Culture Nova Gorica for joining the project and for the opportunity to represent it here. I think this is a great development, a bridge between the two countries." Next year Slovenia will be the host of the Bologna Book Fair, and there will also be the IBI meeting in Trieste, which will also take place partly in Slovenia, and then in 2025 we will go to Nova Gorica, and what could be better? Our literature is connected and together we can do a lot."
Nova Gorica Mayor Samo Turel stressed the importance of the presentation of the European Capital of Culture at this event: "Slovenia handed over the parchment, the "cultural baton," to the guest of honor at next year's Frankfurt Book Fair - Italy - and emphasized the importance of blurring borders. This is our goal in the context of the European Capital of Culture. The presentation of the European Capital of Culture at this event is certainly a step forward in promotion, in informing the general public, including the German public, that Nova Gorica, in cooperation with Gorica, will be the European Capital of Culture in 2025. Interestingly, the presentation of the parchment took place after Dušan Jelinčič, a writer and journalist from Trieste, took the stage, and in his speech there, he emphasized the issue of the border throughout history and the importance that the border no longer exists, and how it is coexistence that unites this area in particular and carries it forward."
The mayor of Gorizia Rodolfo Ziberna, has emphasized the support of the two governments, Slovenian and Italian, and the high profile of the event: "I would like to thank the Slovenian government for this opportunity, and also to the Italian government, since we will have this presentation next year. It is extraordinary to have the opportunity to participate in the Frankfurt Book Fair, which is also one of the most important cultural events in the world. What happens at the Frankfurt Book Fair can be read not only here in Frankfurt, but also in many European and world capitals."