Writersblog

Salomon Kroonenberg

Salomon Kroonenberg, Dutch writer

The Dutch programme at the International Book Fair in Beijing was cunn... >>> read more

Kai Kang

Kai Kang, Journalist China Reading Weekly

Dear Dutch publishers. The book fair is over. Perhaps you’ll now... >>> read more

Ingrid and Dieter Schubert

Ingrid and Dieter Schubert, Dutch illustrators

The days are full and long. We are incessantly bombarded with impressi... >>> read more

Michele Hutchison

Michele Hutchison, Editor De Arbeiderspers

Arriving on the stand on the first day, I’d asked a Chinese visi... >>> read more

Michele Hutchison

Michele Hutchison, Editor De Arbeiderspers

Big excitement today since we were finally meeting with Songyu from Fl... >>> read more

Michele Hutchison

Michele Hutchison, Editor De Arbeiderspers

The traffic in Beijing is horrendous, I’m sure the other blogger... >>> read more

Thomas Möhlmann

Thomas Möhlmann, Staff member Dutch Foundation for Literature

What an evening the poets and the approximately 200 onlookers present ... >>> read more

Ingrid and Dieter Schubert

Ingrid and Dieter Schubert, Dutch illustrators

It’s now the third day, and the first one with plenty of sun. Un... >>> read more

Kai Kang

Kai Kang, Journalist China Reading Weekly

What a great opportunity to learn about the Dutch literature for Chine... >>> read more

Salomon Kroonenberg

Salomon Kroonenberg, Dutch writer

A duck flies to and fro over the vast expanses of world ocean, despera... >>> read more

Michele Hutchison

Michele Hutchison, Editor De Arbeiderspers

‘In the era of browsing, we provide reading.’ - Slogan see... >>> read more

Michele Hutchison

Michele Hutchison, Editor De Arbeiderspers

The jewel in the crown of our collection of Arbeiderspers titles publi... >>> read more

Michele Hutchison

Michele Hutchison, Editor De Arbeiderspers

The Chinese publishers I have met during the course of my career, the ... >>> read more

Salomon Kroonenberg

Salomon Kroonenberg, Dutch writer

I have so far never been to a book fair. Nor do I know what to imagine... >>> read more

Kai Kang

Kai Kang, Journalist China Reading Weekly

Since 2006, I began writing about the Netherlands’ performance a... >>> read more

Henk Pröpper

Henk Pröpper, Director Dutch Foundation for Literature

Now that the fair is just round the corner, this is perhaps the moment... >>> read more

Henk Pröpper

Henk Pröpper, Director Dutch Foundation for Literature

In two weeks’ time, the official opening of one of the largest b... >>> read more

Ramsey Nasr

Ramsey Nasr, Dutch poet

Ramsey Nasr (b. 1974, Rotterdam) is a poet and author, actor and direc... >>> read more


The Netherlands Country of honour BIBF 2011

The Netherlands is at this year’s Beijing International Book Fair. More than 30 Dutch novelists, poets, authors of non-fiction, writers of children’s books, comic-strip artists, designers and musicians will visit the Book Fair this year. They will come to Beijing to meet their Chinese publishers and readers, and to perform at the Fair and at various venues in the city.

Although the Netherlands is the guest of honour this year, we have always felt most welcome in China. In the past few years, a great many Dutch titles have been translated into Chinese. Vice versa, attention for China and Chinese literature is growing in the Netherlands. The fact that we can present ourselves as the host country this year is largely due to the good relations that have been built up in recent times. The numerous contacts have made us aware of what is important, valuable and beautiful in the view of Chinese people.

The programme we present is rich and diverse, and embraces disciplines such as literature (which is self-evident), visual art, design, architecture and comic strips. A major part of the authors’ programme will take place in the auditorium of the Dutch Pavilion. On Fair days, a continuous programme of book presentations, discussions, workshops, meetings with school classes, interviews and lectures will take place. Encounters between Dutch and Chinese writers will form a central feature of the programme. All the Dutch authors attending have recently had work translated into Chinese.

Dutch authors will also appear outside the confines of the Book Fair. For this purpose, co-operation has been sought with a number of the professional, vibrant platforms that Beijing has in abundance: the NCPA, the Bookworm, Sanlian Bookstore, Trainspotting, Tsinghua and Beijing Normal Universities. From 1 to 4 September, the dynamic Ullens Center for Contemporary Art (UCCA) will function as the décor for Café Amsterdam. This ‘reconstructed’ bar will host a series of meetings in which a number of authors discuss various topics with one another, such as the importance of curiosity, Holland on first acquaintance, urban planning, architecture, photography and the artwork as a stimulus to writing. It will have the ambience of a traditional Amsterdam bar - due to the décor and the good music and striking ‘draw clips’ of Sonja van Hamel and her band. More information on the programme at and outside the Book Fair is provided in this brochure [elsewhere on the website].

Simultaneously with the Fair in Beijing, we shall also devote attention to Chinese literature at one of the most important literary events in the Netherlands, Manuscripta. In this context, Chinese writers will be invited to the Netherlands and a part of our programme in Beijing will also be shown live in the Netherlands.

In the remarkable Dutch Pavilion at the Fair, we shall also proudly present exhibitions of, among other things, the letters of Van Gogh, whose collected correspondence is being translated integrally into Chinese, and of the work of icons of Dutch children’s literature such as Dick Bruna, Fiep Westendorp and Max Velthuijs. Because the Netherlands and China have been arguing for centuries about the origins of printing, we shall also present the exhibition Best-Produced Books. Finally, we devote small-scale expositions to Dutch comic-strip artists, to books on architecture and design and to one of the Netherlands’ most charismatic diplomats Robert van Gulik, connoisseur of Chinese language and literature, writer of all kinds of books on Chinese history and morality and, of course, author of the Judge Dee detective stories.

In conjunction with the Amsterdam Rijksmuseum, a book has been produced in which each of the 22 authors attending this Book Fair covers a seventeenth-century painting in the renowned collection of the Rijksmuseum.

Our contribution to the Beijing Book Fair is summarized in our slogan ‘Open landscape - open book’. We would like to add ‘Open dialogue’ to this. In our programmes, at the Fair and in the city, we shall bring together Chinese and Dutch writers to discuss the role of writers and artists in society, and the significance that literary texts can have.

We wish you much pleasure in your acquaintance with one of the liveliest, multi-faceted and open styles of literature that Europe currently has to offer.