20 June 2013 Stefan Chwin in Duży Format

‘I’m grateful to my father for having allowed me to study at a university,’ says Stefan Chwin in his interview to Katarzyna Bielas in Duży Format – a weekly insert of the Gazeta Wyborcza daily. The writer chose Polish studies as a result of his parents’ persuasion, although he originally wanted to submit his documents to the Academy of Fine Arts. Today he points out that he does not regret his choice, because literature has always been close to his heart.

‘When I had finished the five-year Secondary School of Plastic Arts in Gdynia with good results, I thought that it would be great to study painting at the Academy of Fine Arts. When I told my father about this, he was slightly terrified. “What? Fine arts? Dear God, how will you maintain your family if you become an artist?”,’ tells Chwin.

Does Chwin brood on the future? He says with sadness that he has no time for painting nowadays. Sometimes he even wonders what his life would be like had he chosen a different field of studies. However, the winner of Polityka’s Passport has adopted a simple philosophy: ‘what happened, had to happen,’ he says. He was recently granted the title of professor by President Bronisław Komorowski, he also received the Splendor Gedanensis Award for his two volumes forming a cohesive whole: Miłosz. Interpretacje i świadectwa [Miłosz. Interpretations and testimonies] and Miłosz. Gdańsk i okolice. Relacje – Dokumenty – Głosy [Miłosz. Gdańsk and its vicinity. Accounts, documents, voices].

Read the entire interview with the writer.