February 8 is Prešeren Day in Slovenia marking the death of its greatest literary figure, France Prešeren and celebrating Slovene culture.
It was established in 1945 to raise the cultural consciousness and the self-confidence of the Slovene nation and declared a work-free day in 1991. On February 7, the eve of the holiday, the Prešeren Awards, the highest Slovenian recognition for cultural achievements, are conferred.
Feri Lainšček will receive the Prešeren Prize for his work in the field of literature (novels, poetry collections, short prose, children’s and youth plays, film scripts, radio plays). According to the STA, “Lainšček’s literary achievements have significantly enriched the treasure of Slovenian culture with its high artistic value for almost 40 years.”
Marko Music will be awarded for the work of his life in the field of architecture, where he has been working in Slovenia and the Balkans for almost 60 years and occupies a very special place, according to STA. an architectural and humanist traveler, recognizable in a special, sometimes controversial position, who insists ‘against the flow of time’ and architectural trends, still seeks the spirit of ‘architecture of all time’
The poet Brane Senegačnik will also receive the Prešeren Fund Award in 2021 for the poetry collection Conversations with Nobody, along with violinist Lana Trotovšek and a theater director Tomi Janežič.
He who from fate receives but blow on blow,
Who, like myself in her disfavour stands,
Although he had a hundred mighty hands,
Would vainly strive for riches here below.
His paths are strewn with thorns where’er he go;
And where he looks for home there soon expands
A sea of woes: against its stormy strands
Waves roll and splash in unremitting flow.
Pursued and tossed about by Care, by Need,
He finds no peace from worries on his road,
Though to the farthest place his search may lead.
And only in the quiet, cold abode,
Which after weary life’s span is decreed,
Will death relieve him of his toilsome load.
Translated by Janko Larvin
This portrait of France Prešeren was executed by Ivan Grohar, circa 1900.
JPEG file from Pesnikova galerija, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=327804
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