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14 September
2016

Krakow celebrated the 95th birthday of Stanisław Lem

A literary walk and the screening of The Congress, along with a debate about the Futurological Congress at the ICE Kraków Congress Centre took place in Krakow – the UNESCO City of Literature, in order to commemorate the most famous Polish science fiction writer.

On 10-12 September, the celebrations of the 95th birthday of Stanisław Lem took place in Krakow, including a literary walk in the writer’s footsteps, a screening of The Congress and a debate titled The Futurological Congress, or the world in the system of universal charity. The celebrations were accompanied by a social media campaign, presenting the quotes from Lem’s works and the most important facts about the writer to the general audience.

Not everyone is aware that among all the books written by Stanisław Lem, the author himself liked The Cyberiad the most, that he was a true polyglot, or that when he proposed to his future wife, Barbara, he gave her a cake, because he perceived flowers to be completely impractical. These, and many more facts were presented to the participants of the birthday walk around Krakow, conducted by Elżbieta Binswanger-Stefańska. The interest in the walk was great, so the organisers decided to repeat it for the rest of Lem’s fans. Another edition will take place on the 17th of September.

The celebrations culminated in the evening at the ICE Kraków Congress Centre, with the screening of The Congress (2013) and the debate with Wojciech Zemek, Prof. Piort Popik, PhD and Elżbieta Binswanger-Stefańska, and a surprise for the persistent audience – a performance based on themes from The Futurological Congress. The guests could also see, touch and photograph the Lemachine – the original Mercedes used by the writer. The event was also accompanied by the exhibition of works by Przemek Dębowski, author of covers for Lem’s books, published by Wydawnictwo Literackie. The exhibition will run until the end of September at Księgarnia Pod Globusem (Długa 1).

The celebration of Stanisław Lem’s birthday was organised by the Krakow Festival Office, Krakow UNESCO City of Literature, SWOR Association, Wydawnictwo Literackie and Legalna Kultura.