Festival Zlatá loď je úzce spojen se jménem slovinského básníka Srečka Kosovela (1904–1926), jemuž se kvůli předčasné smrti nepodařilo vydat básnický debut s názvem Zlatá loď. I přesto však jde o jednoho z nejvýznamnějších slovinských tvůrců 20. století a rovněž o jednoho z mála básníků, který svůj koncept lidství a umění spojil do nové kvality. Kosovel neviděl ani umění, ani lidskost pouze jako abstraktní koncept, nýbrž jako koncept etický, který má smysl pouze tehdy, pokud ho jednotlivec opravdu žije a pokud je tím možné změnit podstatu funkce společnosti jako celku. Zkoumání prostorů, jež Srečko Kosovel tímto způsobem zahájil, je tedy směrem, kterým plul a putoval festival Zlatá loď – od roku 2010 v Polsku a od 2013 v České republice. Prostory festivalu Zlatá loď jsou již od samého začátku otevřeny směrem ven i dovnitř. Historie kulturních kontaktů mezi Českou republikou, Polskem a Slovinskem sahá přinejmenším do 19. století a také tehdy – stejně jako dnes – byly tyto kontakty založeny na přátelstvích mezi jednotlivci a vzájemné úctě.
Přátelství mezi básníky různých zemí byly ovocné. V období 2012–2014 vyšla čtyři knižní vydání slovinské literatury v polském překladu: dvoujazyčné vydání básní Srečka Kosovela Kalejdoskop: Izbrane pesmi/Wiersze wybrane (přel. Karolina Bucka Kustec, 2012), výběr z poezie Iztoka Osojnika Spodnie na niebie (přel. Marcin Warmuz, 2012), román současné spisovatelky Maje Novak Karfanaum, czyli as killed (přel. Wojciech Domachowski, 2013) a básnická sbírka Jureho Detely Mech i srebro (přel. Karolina Bucka Kustec, 2014). V roce 2017 v polském překladu vyjde také výběr z poezie Sašy Vegriové Wędrówka w czasie (přel. Karolina Bucka Kustec).
Vícejazyčný projekt Dáte si poezii?, který od roku 2015 probíhal ve všech festivalových městech, je určen k šíření a propagaci poezie pomocí básnických listů a čtení na veřejných místech. V jeho rámci kolemjdoucím nabízíme kromě básní Srečka Kosovela, Jureho Detely a Saše Vegri i texty současných slovinských, českých a polských básníků.
O budoucnosti Zlaté lodi …
Did you know that The Golden Boat Festival is only one part of the extensive Golden Boat program that was conceived in the remote year 2004 by the Literary Association IA? The first The Golden Boat International Poetry Translation Workshop, took place that year. The Literary Association IA, in collaboration with the Polica Dubova Cultural and Artistic Association, and partnerships across Europe, organised several literary events in Germany, Great Britain, Bulgaria, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Czech Republic, Slovakia and Poland, where Slovene poets were reading. Also, three resounding international comparative symposiums were organised: Kosovel and the Political Truth of Poetry, Ecology through Poetry of Jure Detela and The Concepts of Reality through the Experimental Poetry.
The year 2016 brought us new challenges …
Confronted with the modern-day forms of censorship, which are like a plague spreading across Europe, we are now, despite the exceptional popularity of our events, exactly where we used to be twelve years ago: Without the financial support of the state. At the same time,,we are far away from the same position because we are richer in experience and, new partnerships and our vision is even clearer than it used to be.
In spite of extremely unfavourable conditions, we have decided to carry on the Golden Boat Programme in a somewhat different, slightly renovated form, and to introduce necessary changes.
The countries of central Europe are witnessing a return to the old conditions of political exclusion based on the fact that certain cliques have usurped key decision-making positions and thus the control of financial resources. This applies to supporting the production, distribution, as well as the affirmation of works and authors. Despite the fact that we are talking about EU countries, which means that individual cultural organisations have access to EU funds, for most European organisers of cultural events, this accessibility of European funds is merely conceptual, since without a share of funding from their own states, they cannot apply for EU funding. This modern form of political censorship, and exclusion of those who think differently in individual countries, is connected to the distribution – or control of the distribution – of financial resources. This prevention of activity and exclusion from the circle of state-subsidised organisations, also indirectly or directly controls access to international (European) funds, since organisations are unable to put together the necessary co-financing from other sources and their own contributions. This stops the organisation of traditional and internationally successful events that do not fit the policy of the cliques in power, since they represent competition for similar events organised by those in said power who have a considerably higher degree of state support. Slovenia, which has always considered itself to be a liberal and progressive country, has unfortunately ended up in the conservative waters of censorship, the prevention of the international affirmation of “unofficial authors”, and the centuries-long exclusion and persecution of those who think differently.
Because we have been left without even minimal sponsorship, we have had to change the ways we seek international recognition in the field of literature. Instead of festivals and workshops lasting several days, we have been compelled to change the basic structure of our activities in the international arena, in a manner reminiscent of the transformation that has taken place in the organisation of climbing expeditions to the Himalayas. The large-scale, state-sponsored expeditions of the past, involving large groups of climbers and requiring a great deal of time and an enormous amount of resources, have been substituted by small groups of elite climbers. This has enabled the rapid and successful conquest of numerous summits. Inspired by these experiences, we decided to organise some brief literary expeditions around the EU with a small number of authors, who would no longer travel from place to place, making an appearance in each one, but would instead visit a single location, make several appearances, and then return home. This reduces the costs of travel and accommodations while at the same time still allowing high-quality presentations and direct contacts between creative people in host countries and the visiting authors.
In the light of these small-scale events it has become clear that major festival-type events can no longer justify such lavish spending in order to achieve results that are more or less the same. A large number of participants in any case makes genuine contacts and cooperation physically impossible. Small exhibitions, on the other hand, allow the presentation and affirmation of authors who are excluded, censored and persecuted at home – and who often turn out to be those who are most interesting internationally.
Now that these smaller teams are no longer dependent on territories that are closely connected in the geographical sense, we are able to reach more places and countries distant from each other, and in this way, visit those points and cultural milieus which we would be unable to include in our literary itinerary in the context of multi-day tours. Not only that, but we are no longer dependent on the constant begging for funding, bureaucratic procedures, administrative maltreatment of government agencies, and their procrastination when it comes to dealing with applications. These things make it impossible for all those who are not party to inside information, and who do not serve the intersecting interests of government officials and their indirect recompense for their services, to make professional agreements in advance for the long term. The purpose of the programmes, adapted to modern possibilities, is to cover a wider geographical and cultural space. At the same time, by distributing events over the course of the whole year, we also adapt to local conditions and the needs of local communities–in other words we coordinate with locally organised events and programmes.
We decided to maintain the frequently visited websites of the Golden Boat Festival as an info point where our loyal audience will be informed about the events concerning Slovene literature and culture, which take place in the Czech Republic, Poland and Slovakia.