Such a fascinating theme attracted 2 130 participants from 15 Asian and European countries. The artworks were sent from Belarus, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Estonia, Greece, Indonesia, Italy, Kazakhstan, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Switzerland, Ukraine and 61 Polish towns and cities. The Jury of the contest consisted of famous Polish illustrators and authors of books for children: Maria Ekier, Małgorzata Bieńkowska and Krystyna Lipka-Sztarbałło. The entries were evaluated in general and national categories in 12 age groups and in the group of Special Schools. 120 participants of the contest were awarded in the national category and there were 58 laureates in the general category.
The award-giving ceremony took place in one of the most beautiful conference halls of Warsaw – in the Central Agriculture Library.
The ceremony was graced with the presence of His Excellency Vasilij Takev - the Ambassador of Bulgaria, His Excellency Ovidiu Dranga - the Ambassador of Romania, Jakub Beczek - the representative of Polish Republic President’s Office, Włodzimierz Paszyński - the Vice President of the City of Warsaw, Roos Iskandar - Charge d’Affaires of the Embassy of Indonesia, Milan Novotny - the Director of Slovakian Institute, Bożena Żelazowska - the Deputy Director of Culture, Promotion and Tourism Department of the Mazovia Voivodeship Marshal Office, Wiesław Krzemień - the Mayor of Ursus District of the City of Warsaw, Jacek Duchnowski - the Vice Mayor of Ursus District, Janusz Warakomski - the Vice Mayor of Ursus District, Anna Lewandowska - the Councillor of Ursus District, Aleksandra Magierecka - the Head of the Department of Culture and Promotion of Ursus District.
There were also the representatives of educational and cultural institutions participating in the contest from Belarus, Czech Republic, Portugal and Ukraine: Irina Muraszka from the Art Studio „Mrowisko” in Witebsk in Belarus, Ewelina Kowalska from the Park Lane International School in Prague in Czech Republic, Natividade Pires and Jose Passos from the University in Castelo Branco in Portugal, Ludmiła Prots from the School Nb 4 in Kremenec in Ukraine.
At the beginning of the official part of the ceremony all the speakers stressed in their speeches the importance of books and illustrations in the development of creative skills and aesthetic sensibility of young generation.
The Ambassador of Bulgaria - Vasilij Takev emphasized the importance of the tradition and culture of Bulgaria. The Rite of Spring brings in his country joy, hope and love, which are symbolised by Baba Marta and Marteniczki.
The representative of Polish Republic President’s Office - Jakub Beczek expressed that the bookmark will remain an inseparable attribute of books and reading.
The Deputy Mayor of the City of Warsaw Włodzimierz Paszyński - stated in his speech that the opening of the book is like starting a new journey in the unknown world, and it is always a very exciting and a very individual journey.
The Mayor of Ursus District Wiesław Krzemień said that the District Office supported the contest from the beginning when it was a small local event, seeing in it an important element in the promotion of reading carried out by the Public Library in Ursus.
The ceremony proceeded in a very warm atmosphere, full of the joy of the winners and the satisfaction of parents and educators of the achievements of their students. It is worth noting, that some of the winners travelled hundreds or even one thousand kilometers to take part in the ceremony.
The laureates of the first places in the general category received graphics tablets and like other winners statuettes and diplomas of the Marshal of the Mazovia and a set of 20 beautiful bookmarks with their own artworks and small souvenirs. Prizes for the winners were founded by the Mayor of the City of Ursus District Warsaw - Wiesław Krzemień, the President of the estate developer EBEJOT - Andrzej Jaczewski, the Director of the Bulgarian Cultural Institute - Michaela Todorova and Warsaw Tourist Office .
The exhibition of the winning projects and their miniature versions in the form of traditional bookmarks is presented at Public Library in Ursus in Warsaw. A very attractive multimedia version of the exhibition is available on www.bpursus.waw.pl.
This year edition of the contest was the third international and the sixth in the history of the competition. The initiator and the coordinator of the contest is Piotr Jankowski – the director of the Public Library in Ursus.
We encourage all of you to visit the exhibition and see the photo gallery from the final ceremony of the contest made by Ireneusz Barski and to take a part in our next edition of the contest in 2015.