15th Thessaloniki International Book Fair

“We listen, we read, we discuss.” is the slogan of this years’ 15th Thessaloniki International Book Fair at the rhythm of which the co-capital city lives from May 3 to May 6 2018. The biggest book exhibition in Greece in this year's event honors the countries of Francophonie, while the central theme is dedicated to the challenges faced the Democracy in the 21st century in a complex and unstable world. The exhibition is organized by the Hellenic Foundation for Culture in collaboration with TIF-HELEXPO, the Municipality of Thessaloniki, associations of Greek Publishers as well as independent publishers, with the support of the Hellenic Parliament and is under the auspices of the Ministry of Culture and Sports.

Snapshot from a previous organization of the Thessaloniki International Book Fair, which is an annual event with great importance not only to the commercial spread of the book, but also to the consolidation of the reading culture and the ideas’ transportation.

With an international impact, troubled and with lively interest in what is happening around us, the 15th TBF focuses on three main thematic tributes: “Literature and Memory”, “the Refugee Experience”, “Book and Performance”. In the event, 285 publishers from Greece and abroad are taking part, as well as dozens of writers, critics, members of the academic community - historians, political scientists, sociologists, anthropologists, philosophers, translators, visual artists and iconographers. Its program is almost consist of 500 events: round table discussions, presentations of new publishers and creators, a special tribute to crime fiction with the participation of renown foreign writers, meetings among professionals from the world of books, thematic exhibitions and screenings. We should also mention the 5th New Writers’ Festival, the 3rd Translation Festival, as well as various events in the Children’s Corner and the Teenagers’ Forum, which will be provided this year with their own stand in Pavilion 14.

More than 50 schools and 2,500 students are expected to visit the 15th TBF, the children and teenage book “corner”, which this year is housed in a separate space, the Pavillion 14.

Francophonie, Democracy, May ‘68
The worldwide French literature is represented by 30 authors and 44 French-speaking publishing houses. Visitors will have the opportunity to discover the richness, diversity and extroversion of French-speaking literature developed on all 5 continents. A product of varied cultural backgrounds and different socio-political and economic conditions, these literatures claim their dissimilitude and extend with new incomings and ideas the French literature.

"The 15th Thessaloniki International Book Fair opens its gates with 285 publishers from all the world, dozens of writers and around 500 events

Poster from the exhibition devoted to the May 68 revolt.

As far as Democracy goes, the 15th TBF contributes to the extensive discussion concerning the significance of democracy in our day and age in view of the outbreak of nationalism and the attempt to question established democratic rights and obligations even within the heart of Europe. Among the issues to be discussed by renowned writers, historians, political scientists, philosophers and journalists are: the rise of the Extreme Right, how many state or national competences are we willing to concede in international institutions, if we proceed to the deepening or the weakening of the democratic institutions, is there a relation between the free market and democracy (is it a relationship of love or a relation of hatred ?) etc.

"Dedicated to Democracy and Francophonie, the 15th TBF celebrates the 50 years from the revolt of May ’68, presenting an exhibition with the original posters of that age.

50 years since the revolt of May ’68, are completed during the days of the 15th TBF which honors with a special exhibition that multi – dimensional, socio – political event.

During the 15th TBF, 50 years have passed since the revolt in May 1968, an anniversary that could not have been celebrated by an event dedicated to Francophonie and Democracy. In this context, the Hellenic Foundation for Culture organizes a special exhibition with original posters that created male and female students of the School of Fine Arts in Paris in the explosive atmosphere of May 1968, transformed their occupied school into a "Popular Workshop" – the Atelier Populaire. Also, in cooperation with the French Institutes of Greece and Thessaloniki, the Hellenic Foundation for Culture will organize a discussion with speakers that took part in this multi-dimensional and revolutionary event.

One of the exhibition’s posters about May ’68. These original posters that male and female students of the School of Fine Arts in Paris had created.

Literature, Memory, Refugees
On “the Refugee Experience” thematic tribute, the everyday life of the refugees, their needs, their concerns, both the issues of their integration and their offering to our country would be in the limelight with series of events included interlocutors and themselves. The photography exhibition “Paths to Survival” organized by the Hellenic Parliament Foundation and the Greek Union of Photo-Reporters is hosted in the Refugee hall of the 15th TBF, named Amal which means “Hope”.

In the “Literature and Memory” thematic tribute, discussions in the areas of interest “Writing and Politics”, “Creation, Disease and Therapy”, “Literature and Thessaloniki”, etc. are part of the program. The “Jewish experience” which is examined in the Hellenic territory couldn’t be absent from the discussions, because of the Jewish past of the then multicultural Thessaloniki.

In the 5th New Writers’ Festival, 16 poets and writers will illuminate diverse forms of the outstanding multiform Greek modern literature through reading of their books. The 3rd Translation Festival is also rich, with more than 20 translators participating in over 14 events of general and special interest.

Children’s Corner
The most colorful and cheerful space of the 15th TBF is certainly the one devoted to children. The Children’s Corner – Teenagers’ Forum – Educators’ Corner welcomes younger and older readers having prepared 108 events with 158 creators. In their organization 31 publishers of children's and teenagers’ books and 13 cultural institutions (foundations, institutes, museums, universities, embassies, etc.) participated in their organization.

The 15th TBF hosts two exhibitions for children. In the picture, an artwork of the painter - illustrator Persa Zacharia.
All the adorable delicacies gathered in a table. A painting by the illustrator Polina Papanikolaou.

In the pavilion of the honorable Francophonie, young and older book-lovers will have the opportunity to meet French children's book makers, who have also translated into Greek. Also, two exhibitions have been organized: "French Sweets", with works by 34 Greek illustrators on French sweets, and Exhibition of Greek Illustration, with a presentation of 80 Greek and foreign illustrators. More than 50 schools and 2,500 students are expected to visit on the 15th TIFF, the "house" of the children's and teenage book, which is housed in a separate space this year, at Pavilion 14.

Information: 15th Thessaloniki International Book Fair (TBF), 3-6 May 2018. TIF HELEXPO, International Exhibition & Conference Centre of Thessaloniki, 154 Egnatia Str.,Thessaloniki,
Free Admission. http://thessalonikibookfair.gr
Τhe International Book Fair of Thessaloniki, is an integral part of city’s life and is a great celebration for the residents and visitors of the co-capital..

If you would like to get more detailed information about the above and all the other events, discussions and exhibitions of the 15th TBF, you will find in its website whatever you may be interested in. http://thessalonikibookfair.gr

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