„Zelta zirgs”, „Personiskā Latvija” and other books. „Tautas grāmatu plaukts”

„Zelta zirgs”, „Personiskā Latvija” and other books. „Tautas grāmatu plaukts”
Mārtiņš Otto, Rīga 2014 . Andris Vilks, the director of The National Library of Latvia, at the opening of „Tautas grāmatu plaukts” („People's Bookshelf”)
21-08-2013 A+ A-
On Tuesday, 20 August, a significant campaign called „Tautas grāmatu plaukts” („People’s Bookshelf”) was opened at „Esplanāde 2014” culture summer house. In there, every guest was invited to give one, the most favourite, book to The National Library of Latvia with a special message written in the book in order to keep it for next generations. „Zelta Zirgs” by Rainis, „Personiskā Latvija” by Atis Klimovičs and „Remember those great Volkswagen ads?”, a cult reading for advertising professionals, now lie at the bookshelf together with many other great pieces.

Andris Vilks, the director of The National Library of Latvia, Diāna Čivle, the director of „Rīga 2014” Foundation, Andris Rubīns, the director of „DDB Latvija”, Karina Pētersone, the manager of Latvian Institute, representatives from „Viegli” foundation took part at the campaign opening together with several Latvian literature professionals and publicists.

Andris Vilks noted at the event opening that architect Gunārs Birkerts expected to use a very central place for „Tautas grāmatu plaukts” at the National Library atrium. The bookshelf will be as high as a five-storey building, so everyone is invited to fill in the shelf. Both Vilks and Birkerts had a feeling that books should be the first thing to notice in order to support the feeling that you really are in the library. Andris Vilks did not give his favourite book yet, he wishes to do it in private as it is quite special to him. Everyone can bring his book with a hand-written message at „Esplanāde 2014” until 15 September or at any Latvian library until 1 November.


Diāna Čivle, the director of „Rīga 2014” Foundation;

„Force Majeure” European Capital of Culture application

When choosing which book I should bring at „Tautas grāmatu plaukts”, I went through a lot of thinking. I realized that other people had done the same. At first, I considered the books that are important to Latvia. I thought of all the classical literature, books we read at school, books that are valuable at all. Then I realized it is not the right direction how to think about it. Then I went back to my childhood. It turns out other thought similarly, too. Obviously, childhood readings made a big impression on us. I, for instance, have a little book that nearly is holding together and had been used a lot. It’s „Skudras nepadodas” written by Ondřej Sekora. Still, I did not choose that one.

It was the third period when I knew it’s about a book that it is important for me personally. It got me to „Pasakas par ziediem” written by Anna Sakse. It would be my book that I put at the bookshelf. Finally, it was clear that a „Force Majeure” book is the one to choose. It’s an essence of The European Capital of Culture programme from its very beginnings, discussions about Latvian cultural policies and processes, etc. Many people joined in order to create this application-book. This is why this piece should be given to next generations.


Inese Zandere, poet

A. Klimovičs „Personiskā Latvija”

I chose this book because I think of The National Library as personally as of Latvia. This book was written for a long time. These are human stories, their subjective history. If something comes through pain and difficulties, the result is really true and honest. I hope it will be the same for The National Library.


Karina Pētersone, the director of Latvian Institute;
„Zelta zirgs” by Rainis

 When Gunārs Birkerts though of The National Library shape, he used an image of The Glass mountain as a metaphore to a tough way full of sacrifices. It’ s a significant symbol to Latvians. This idea of Glass mountain was outstanding in 1918 when we got our state, then came 1990 when we got Latvia back again.

It’s my beloved book marked as nr. 47 at my bookshelf and catalogue. It was given as a present soon after my fourth birthday. It was my name day, and there is a message on this book that my friend Mārīte, two years older at that time, had written. It was in 1958 when this book was just published. I can see how many times it has been read by the worn-out, stained cover. Of course, I came to all those great ideas and conclusions later. As a child, I saw a fight between the good and the bad, felt sorry for Antiņš and was angry to both older brothers and hoped that Saulcerīte will wake up.


Inga Ulmane and Eva Ikstena-Strapcāne, „Viegli” Foundation;
„No Jāņiem līdz Murjāņiem” by I. Ziedonis, A. Berķis

Building a summer house for Imants Ziedonis at Murjāņi has been described pretty emotionally and technically at this book. It is about a building process where readers see how dreams are built, how to make something happen in a way you wish, not by some book example. Representatives from „Viegli” Foundation were the first who opened „Gaismas pils” („The Castle of Light” ) in May, 2011 with a concert performance. Back then, they sang music with Imants Ziedonis’  lyrics and presented „Viegli” album. From that time, they are friends with libraries all the time. By the way, the main concert hall at The National Library will be named after Im. Ziedonis.


Baiba Moļņika, Latvian National Commission for UNESCO;
„Latvijas diplomātija un diplomāti: (19181940)” by R.Treijs

The reason why I chose this book was related to this great challenge: showing the world that Latvian people are able of many things and can make them happen. We have to believe our country, our future as well as The National Library. We have to realize that it is not for us only. It’s we who are around the world. The National Library will be the project we will be judged by. Just like it was for Latvian diplomats who represented our country and proved that we deserve our own state. I wish to all the people that they have belief in Latvia. We are the nation who can stand on a political stage with our heads up.

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