Designblok, Prague International Design Festival opened today Prague. The festival, now in its ninetheenth year, boasts that it is the largest showcase of fashion and design in Central Europe. The event is mainly based in the historic Výstaviště Praha exhibition grounds, and will feature the works of 304 designers, this year guided by the overarching theme of food. I spoke with Bára Švehlová, PR manager for the event, and began by asking her to explain the theme of this year’s Designblok:
The 21st edition of the annual Jihlava International Documentary Film Festival has got underway. The festival opened with a film by Tereza Nvotová called The Lust for Power about the controversial Slovak politician Vladimir Mečiar. The former Slovak prime minister is not the only politician focused on by documentary film makers this year.
Martina Formanová, the wife of the famous Czech director Miloš Forman, was recently in Prague to launch an audio version of her novel, called Případ Pavlína, or Case Pavlína. The book, which was released a few years ago, tells the story of the Czech-born 1980’s super model Pavlína Pořízková and her family’s dramatic escape from Communist Czechoslovakia.
Marta Kubišová, one of the most popular Czechoslovak singers of the 1960s and a symbol of resistance against the communist regime is bowing out with a final goodbye tour that started in the Slovak city of Kosice at the end of September and will take her to Prague’s Lucerna Palace where the singer started her career.
For the Irish poet Michael O’Loughlin, Europe is not just a place on the map. The Europe of his poetry is a labyrinth of ideas, memories and languages. Its borders are permeable and shifting. We sense it is there, yet it remains stubbornly elusive. Michael is in Prague as part of the UNESCO City of Literature programme, and has been reflecting on the city’s place in Europe, as well as his own European identity. He spoke with David Vaughan.