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Ryszard Krynicki (born in 1943) is one of the most important figures of the Polish literary scene. He made his debut with a volume of poetry entitled Pęd pogoni, pęd ucieczki / Speed of Pursuit (1968). In the seventies, he was the editor of the magazine “Student”, which brought together the creators of the so-called “Student” magazine. Generations of ’68 (New Wave). His involvement in the activities of the democratic opposition and his signature on the Letter of 59 resulted in a print ban (1976-1980). Krynicki is first of all a poet, but also one of the first independent Polish publishers. Together with his wife, Krystyna Krynicka, he founded a5 publishing house in Poznań in 1989 (in 1998 he moved his business and publications to Kraków, where he works and lives to this day). He is a distinguished translator of poetry written in German, mainly by Paul Celan, Nelly Sachs, Bertold Brecht, Hans Magnus Enzesberg and Reiner Kunze. His fascination with haiku poetry is also well known (as evidenced by his book Haiku. Haiku masters 2014). Winner of many awards, including those of the Stefan Batory Foundation. This year’s edition of the Kościelski Award will be followed by the Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Movement and Democracy. The award is made by the Friedrich Gundolf Foundation, and most recently by the Zbigniew Herbert Prize for Freedom of Thought.

Photo: T. Wiech