Flemish author Bart Moeyaert has been appointed artistic director of the programme to be presented by Flanders and the Netherlands as guests of honour at the Frankfurt Book Fair in 2016.
In choosing Bart Moeyaert the two foundations are clearly opting for an enterprising author who is held in high regard by his colleagues, by the public and by the media, in both Flanders and the Netherlands. Moeyaert is an internationally renowned author with an extensive network in many foreign countries and translations in twenty-one languages. Nineteen of Moeyaert’s books have been published in German translation, most of them by Carl Hanser Verlag. He has a strong relationship with the German language area, where he regularly holds workshops and appears on stage at festivals. He has been attending the Frankfurt Book Fair for twenty-five years and knows it from the inside out. Moeyaert writes prose and poetry for readers of all ages and in that sense builds bridges between different literary genres and authors. He is passionate about all kinds of art forms, enjoys experimenting with digital media, is continually searching for innovative ways of interesting and involving his readers, has gained experience at organizing multidisciplinary productions and is extraordinarily creative. These qualities among others make Bart Moeyaert the perfect person to fill the role of artistic director.
“I’m now going to look for a simple concept with a clear message,” says Bart Moeyaert. “Finding the most natural way to present Flanders and the Netherlands together internationally – that’s important. On reading tours I’ve all too often had to explain where Flanders and the Netherlands are. Is Flemish the same as Dutch and is Amsterdam near Antwerp?” The guest of honour programme will be breathtaking and transcend all the clichés. Moeyaert goes on: “You can’t use tulips or beer to promote literature. I enjoy parties, but I’m not crazy about having parties here there and everywhere. A guest of honour at the Frankfurt Book Fair is memorable only if you can still recall that unique atmosphere years later. You remember what it was like to step into the guest of honour’s hall, you know where you were sitting when you experienced that particular event, you can still see the writers in front of you. That’s what we have to achieve, presenting the Low Countries in Frankfurt in such a way that visitors remember them as the Wow! Countries.”
That’s what we have to achieve, presenting the Low Countries in Frankfurt in such a way that visitors remember them as the Wow! Countries.