Kateryna Kalytko   [ Ukraine ]

Kateryna Kalytko was born in Vinnytsia in 1982. After finishing school there, she studied political science and journalism at the Kyiv-Mohyla Academy from 1999 to 2005. As an author, she initially wrote poems that were published in various literary journals and anthologies in Ukraine while she was still a student. Her first volume of poetry was published in 1999 under the title »Посібник зі створення світу« (tr: Instructions for Creating the World); seven more have followed to date. War represents a central theme in Kalytko‘s works: the Balkan wars of the 1990s, the Ukrainian war of the present. Since 2008 Kalytko has also translated works of Balkan literature by Miljenko Jergović, Ozren Kebo, Melina Kamerić, Nenad Veličković, Mileta Prodanović, and Mehmed Meša Selimović.

In 2006 her collection of stories »М.істерія« (tr: Mysteria/Hysteria) was published. At the center of the leisurely flowing, at times hypnotic texts is a lonely photographer who absorbs fleeting impressions and moods day after day. The stories are based on these visual impressions and are interspersed with comments and excursions by the author. Kaltyko addresses the mysteries of life and human relationships, telling of love and betrayal, and plays with, among other things, the motifs of birth and death and of life after death, which loses its terribleness when viewed from the perspective of the deceased.

In her book »Земля Загублених, або Маленькі страшні казки« (2017; tr: The Land of Lost People) Kalytko writes about Crimea and its inhabitants who have lost their homeland. She is planning a history of the Jews of her hometown Vinnytsia, which takes into account the increased attention directed towards this subject in Ukraine. In the texts of her most recent publication, the poetic collection »Ніхто нас тут не знає, і ми — нікого« (2019; tr: Nobody Knows Us Here, and We Know No One), the focus is on the effect of historical events on the human psyche. The »Газета по-українськи« (tr: Newspaper in Ukrainian) describes Kalytko as a »phenomenon of Ukrainian literature, a desirable and unexpected phenomenon. Firstly, her prose is intelligent and refined and does not seek to achieve rapid commercial success. Secondly, one immediately finds their footing in these texts and wants to enjoy them in solitude for as long as possible. Thirdly, most importantly, Kalytko writes texts in which the details of human life create a harmonious, sophisticated, and extremely valuable artistic world.«

Kalytko’s works have been translated into English, German, Polish, Armenian, Lithuanian, Slovenian, Serbian, Bulgarian, Italian, and Hebrew. She was a grant recipient of the Central European Initiative and the Polish Ministry of Culture’s »Gaude Polonia« program and has received many awards for her work, including the Crystal Vilenica Award in 2016, the Joseph Conrad Literature Prize in 2017, the BBC Ukraine – Book of the Year in 2017, and the Lviv – UNESCO City of Literature Award special prize in 2019.

The author lives in Vinnytsia.

 

Bibliography

 

Посібник зі створення світу

Логос

Вінниця, 1999

 

Сьогоднішнє завтрашнє

Гранослов

Київ, 2001

 

Портретування асфальту

Смолоскип

Київ, 2004)

 

Діалоги з Одіссєем

Пульсари

Київ, 2005

 

М.істерія

Факт

Київ, 2007

 

Сезон штормів

Електрокнига

Київ, 2013

 

Катівня. Виноградник. Дім

Видавництві Старого Лева

Львів, 2014

 

Земля Загублених, або Маленькі страшні казки

Видавництві Старого Лева

Львів, 2017

 

Бунар

Видавництві Старого Лева

Львів, 2018

 

Ніхто нас тут не знає, і ми — нікого

Meridian Czernowitz

Чернівці, 2019