If translation is “the art of the possible”, from 2006 Bellinzona will become the promoter of the dialogue about the possible by hosting the first festival of literature and translation.
The festival intends to stimulate the dialogue between authors, translators and readers; through a reflection on the relationship between author and translator, authors who write in a language different from their mother tongue, and writers who work in the practice of translation.
The authors and translators will be invited to share with the public their experience with writing and/or translating, and with the meeting between different cultures.
If love of literature is the core reason for these meetings, Babel wants to offer an occasion to consider aspects of the contemporary world that have a global relevance, such as the meeting between different cultures, the “linguistic hospitality”. It is precisely in today’s world, multi-ethnic and in perpetual movement, that translation will claim a place more and more necessary.
The festival will occur over three days, where throughout the authors will be invited to dialogue with their translators, considered as privileged interlocutors. Many authors have been chosen among those who write in a language which is not their mother tongue. The discussions will always be accompanied by a reading of both the original text and the Italian translation.
Every year the festival will be centred on a guest language, and on languages of the Swiss and European babels. For 2006, in conjunction with the 50th anniversary of the Hungarian revolution, the guest language will be Hungarian. Several Hungarian authors, who have developed an important rapport with a second language, have been invited: Giorgio Pressburger, Tomáso Kemény, Zsuzsanne Gahse, Christina Viragh, Ferenc Szijj and Beatrice Töttössy. This first edition of Babel will equally welcome francophone writers: Abdourahman A.Waberi and Daniel De Roulet, and further authors will include Marco Lodoli and Fabio Pusterla: two important Italian writers who translate from French.
Translation is not only a linguistic concept, Babel develops other dimensions of the possible with a program of translation in the broader sense, between artistic languages:
– Art, in collaboration with la rada Babel proposes two events which look into the boundaries between art and literature:
Il coro dei disturbi: Steve Piccolo and Gak Sato present a new work on the voice which has been distorted and disturbed. dyslexia, stuttering, and other gifts are studied, appreciated and emulated with the search for a possible form of communication. The heart of the project explores the rapport between verbal communication and vocal, thought and expression, individual situation and a collective context.
Something about the conditions for a good collaboration: a object-book which reflects on the concept of collaboration in art by Giancarlo Norese.
– Cinema, in the weeks preceding Babel the Circolo del cinema of Bellinzona has organised a program of films inspired by literary works, connected to the works of invited authors and the guest nation: Cinebabel Hungary. Projections in Bellinzona and Locarno. See the whole program at the site www.cicibi.ch
– Music, on Saturday evening Babel presents the Kafka-Fragmente by Gyorgy Kurtág (1986): compositions for violin and soprano, inspired by the Journals and the Letters of Franz Kafka. Performed by András Keller, violinist chosen by the composer as the official violinist of the Fragmente and who recently recorded the work for ECM; soprano: Anna Maria Pammer. The concert opens with an invitation to listen, Fra senso e suono. Frammenti per ascoltare György Kurtág by Mario Pagliarani.
– Theatre, for the Babel launch the Nobel Prize winner poet Derek Walcott presented his stage version of the Odyssey, with the Italian translator Matteo Campagnoli, Prof. Luigi Sampietro and the actors Giovanna Bozzolo, Alberto Mancioppi et Antonio Zanoletti
– Photography, in conjunction with Babel, as part of the Biennale dell’immagine “Invasioni”, the Comune of Chiasso organises the first Swiss exhibition of J.-P. Pedrazzini, photographer who died tragically in Budapest in 1956: www.biennaleimmagine.ch