Winter/spring 2024


2024 marks the fifth anniversary of Wrocław’s membership in UNESCO Creative Cities Network as a City of Literature. We look back at that time with mixed feelings… It all started in the best possible way: with the news of the Nobel Prize in Literature for Wrocław resident, Olga Tokarczuk, almost coinciding with the acceptance into the Network. But then COVID-19 happened, and the lockdown which transformed the way in which we think about and ‘produce’ culture, and then Russia launched the full-scale aggression on Ukraine, which again transformed our city (flooded with war refugees, among them both readers and writers), and then the economic crisis deepened. We do hope the next five years are brighter, although the state of the world – both geopolitical and ecological – leaves limited room for optimism. But literature helps and transforms, and we want those changes in Wrocław to be even more visible and meaningful, and that’s why we started the year with a survey among the residents of our city regarding reading habits and literary dreams. We will use the results to create a strategy of the literary development of Wrocław UNESCO City of Literature in the next five years.

Early 2024 is also the time of some important events. On 24 February we will join other UNESCO Cities of Literature in the project #ReadingForOdesa – celebrating the power of Ukrainian literature and symbolically supporting the Odesa Literary Museum, tragically affected by the war. In Wrocław, we will focus especially on Victoria Amelina, a very talented author whom we hosted many times, and who lost her life in Russian bomb attack in Kramatorsk. 

To mark 21 February, i.e. International Mother Language Day, designated by UNESCO to promote linguistic diversity, we participate in the Threads exhibition prepared by Manchester City of Literature. Three poets and one visual artist from our city made contributions to the exhibition and you can see them all here

Those are, obviously, not all international projects we’re working on. We’re also getting ready for World Poetry Day on 21 March, the World Book and Copyright Day on 23 April, and many more to come… And in the spring, we will write about our new artist-in-residence programme and the writers we host and plan to host in 2024. Stay tuned!