February 2014

Giwi Margwelaschwili Prize Awarded in Georgia

Dr. Stephan Wackwitz (left) and Matthias Klingenberg (right) present the Givi Margwelaschwili Prize to Lasha Bakradze (center). © DVV International

On 14 February, at the Writers’ House of Georgia, the Givi Margwelaschwili Prize was presented to the historian, writer, actor, curator and activist Lasha Bakradze. The prize is awarded annually by the Goethe Institute and DVV International and honours outstanding contributions to the promotion of German-Georgian cultural exchange. About 150 people from the Tbilisi cultural milieu took part in the event.

Beginning with this year, the prize is under the patronage of the Georgian Foreign Minister Maia Panjikidze. In her speech Panjikidze underlined the importance of the work of Bakradzes as well as the award for cultural exchange between Germany and Georgia which was instituted in 2013.

The Georgian writer Anna Kordzaia-Samadashvili outlined in her speech the life of the multi-talented Bakradze, and praised him as Mamulishvili, which translates as “enthusiastic patriot” or “real Georgian”.

The German Ambassador Ortwin Hennig particularly praised the critical side of Lasha Bakradzes in his speech: He doesn’t shy away from speaking openly about problems and challenges in the two countries and their relations.

The German filmmaker Stefan Tolz sent a video message from Munich in which he stressed that Bakradze has always sought to transmit a contemporary image of Germany in Georgia: An image of Germany separate from traditional Bavarian costumes, German car brands and obsessive punctuality. His very special merit lies precisely therein.

Dr. Stephan Wackwitz, Director of the Goethe Institute Georgia and Matthias Klingenberg, Regional Director of DVV International, presented the prize, worth 4,000 EUR, to Lasha Bakradze, who, visibly moved, expressed his gratitude to those present.

Special thanks in this regard, goes to the ProCredit Bank Georgia for their generous and non-bureaucratic support of the event.

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