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Albana Shala


© CCN

aus Tirana
Artist in Residence
Apr. 2015 - Mai. 2015
Albana Shala (1968) grew up in Tirana, Albania. She studied English and translated fiction and nonfiction from English into Albanian. In 1992, she began working for the UNDP office in Tirana. In 1995, she moved to the Netherlands to study International Law and Development at the Institute of Social Studies in The Hague and soon thereafter established herself in Amsterdam. For many years now she works as Programme Coordinator for Free Press Unlimited (former Press Now), a Dutch foundation that supports independent media in conflict regions and countries in development.

Her first poems and short stories appeared in Albanian journals and magazines in Albania and Kosovo. In 2008, her first Albanian poetry collection Papa Dixhital was published in Tirana by Dituria. For this debut she was awarded the prestigious Migjeni prize by the Ministry of Culture of Albania (2009). A Dutch translation of this debut (De digitale Paus) was published in 2009 by Uitgeverij P (Leuven). Shala’s second poetry collection Parajsa është e portokalltë (Paradise is Orange) appeared in the fall of 2010. This collection was nominated for KULT Academy Award for fiction in 2011 (Albania). Her third book Ngarkesa e fëmijës (Cargo of a child) is a collection of short stories which was published by Dituria in 2013. It was shortlisted for the European Prize for Literature (2014) and the Fiction of the year (2013) by the Ministry of Culture of Albania.
Albana’s stories and poetry readings have been well received in Albania, Kosovo, Austria, Germany, USA, Belgium and the Netherlands. In 2010, she was a resident of the International Writing Program, Iowa University (USA). In 2012, she spoke at TEDx Prishtina about her experience in dealing with autism through her son, striving to combine motherhood, writing poetry and an indefatigable sense of wonder for the human condition into one holistic package.


Albana Shala [artist]
Man küsse sich jetzt im Stehen, 2015-05-12 20:00:00 [event]


Publications:
2014
Introductory Essay to Albania chapter in the publication (Dutch): ‘Het Oost Blok Boek : een reis langs de sporen van het communistische verleden’ Nieuw Amsterdam Uitgeverij, the Netherlands
2013
Short stories Collection (Albanian): ‘Ngarkesa e femijes” (A child’s cargo), Dituria Publishing House, Tirana, Albania

2010
Poetry bundle (Albanian): ‘Parajsa eshte e portokallte’ (Paradise is orange) Dituria Publishing House, Tirana, Albania
Essay (English): ‘In search of Ivanovka” Iowa City Library & IWP Panel Series : ‘A sense of place’
Poems published in Dielli (The Sun) – the bilingual Albanian American Newspaper in NYC, USA
Interview (Dutch) in ‘Tussen twee werelden’ Dutch Foundation for Literature publication, Amsterdam, the Netherlands
Poems published in quarterly review Perpjekja, nr.26-27, Tirana, Albania
Poems (Alb) published in Zeri and Koha Ditore, Prishtina, Kosovo
Poems (Alb) published in Milosao literary magazine, Tirana, Albania
Poems published in .AL.NL bilingual magazine, nr.1&2, Dordrecht, the Netherlands

2009
Poetry collection (Albanian-Dutch): ‘De digitale Paus’ Uitgeverij P. publishing, Leuven, Belgium
Essay (German): ‘Wien, das Schwert und die Geige’, Literatur und Kritik, Salzburg, Austria
Poems (Alb) in Zeri journal, Prishtina, Kosovo
2008
Poetry collection ‘Papa Dixhital’ Dituria publishing, Tirana, Albania awarded Migjeni prize by the Ministry of Culture as the best debut of 2008 Albanian literature
Poems (German) in ‘Literatur aus Albanien: ein Streifzug’ Literaturhaus publication, Vienna, Austria.
Short story (Dutch) ‘Brief aan de Koningin’’ in ‘Een Dansje in de regen’ short stories publication Passage publishing, Groningen
Poems (German) published in Literatur und Kritik, Salzburg, Austria
2006
Short story ‘Rroba me porosi’ (Tailor-made clothes) included in the Anthology of the Albanian Contemporary Prose, publisher Ombra GVG, Tirana, Albania
2005
Introductiecahier (Dutch) published by the Dutch Foundation for Literature, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
2004-1997
Short stories & poems (AlB) published in Albania and Kosovo: Perpjekja quarterly, Mehr Licht literary magazine, Rilindja daily, Gazeta Shqiptare – Milosao literary review, Pasqyra, Zeri i Rinise weekly.
1998
Co-author with Lisa Chason of short story ‘Borders’ (English) broadcast by BBC radio: short story morning program


Performances, Residencies, Media appearances:

Several poetry readings (Amsterdam/The Hague) 2004- present
Interview for the documentary: De stem van Dichters (2013) AIMIRO documentary house (2012).
TV Interview “Pasdite në Top Channel” (may 2013)
TV Interview at Albanian Radio Television ( july 2013)
Interview MAPO magazine (2013)
Interview at Panorama daily (2013)
TEDx speaker: “Dancing to Bach”, Prishtina, Kosovo (2012)
Participation at Leipziger Buchermesse: 2011 - das größte Literaturprogramm der südosteuropäischen Länder seit dem Zerfall Jugoslawiens: (workshop and reading).
International Writers’ Program, Iowa University, USA ( Aug.-Nov. 2010)
Readings Iowa city: Iowa city Public Library, Shambaugh House, Iowa University (Sep.-Oct.2010)
Poetry reading Nutshuis, The Hague, (Dichtersochtend, organized by Nivon, April 2010)
Interview & poetry reading: Literaturhaus, Vienna, Austria (January 2010)
Interview: Radio Television Kosovo (RTK) culture program (January 2010)
Organizer – poetry session in Uzbekstandards, Amsterdam, The Netherlands (October 2009)
‘Der Flughafen des Herzens’: Schreibende Frauen aus und in Tirana: Interview & reading, Literaturhaus, Vienna, Austria (October 2009)
Interview: RTSH (Albanian Public Radio Televison) Program ‘Only coffee’ (November 2009)
‘Werelddichters podium’ – several performances organized by the Dutch Fonds for the Literature in the Netherlands and Belgium: Antwerp, Brussels, Rotterdam, Groningen, Amsterdam (Fall 2005)
Organizer: Albanian culture week, de Balie, Amsterdam, The Netherlands (2001)
Visual Art Collaboration
‘Meanderen aan de Maas’ Interdisciplinary project with poets & painters related to AIDA (Dutch Organization Supporting Artists in Exile). Months long exhibition, supporting publications and readings in Amsterdam, De Kunstkerk Rotterdam, Boekhandel Donner, Den Haag, Institute of Social Studies, Dordrecht, Pictura (2007)
‘‘Ik heb geleerd van een fiets te houden’/I have learned to fall in love with a bicycle’ exhibition organized by AIDA Nederland with the Amsterdam Public Library (2009)
Music collaboration
‘Learning to kiss’ poem-song performed by De Vos Trio, Jonathan Cooper (composer), Ana Dabrowska (photography) . Presented at TEDx Amsterdam 2009 by Gary Carter. Included at TEDx Amsterdam supporting publication ‘Breakthrough’


Non- Fiction publications & engagements:

Chair of UNESCO IPDC’s Council (2014 -) https://www.freepressunlimited.org/en/news/albana-shala-new-chair-of-unescos-ipdc-panel
Board member of Foundation “In den Vreemde” which provides temporary space to artists who work under socio-political pressure (2013 - ) www.indenvreemde.org/
Editor of the Albanian Dutch quarterly .AL.NL, Dordrecht, (2010-2011)
Several articles on media and civil society developments published at ABLAK, Oost Europa Verkenning, Searching for Peace in Europe and Eurasia (2000 -)
Editor “Why Independent Media Should Be Supported in Countries in Transition," Free Press in South-Eastern Europe Amsterdam, Press Now (1998)
Co-author Phraseology Dictionary: Albanian-English-German Publishing House “8 Nentori”, Tirana, Albania (1994)
Non- fiction work/translations published in Zeri I Rinise weekly , Tirana weekly and literary weekly Drita (1990-1995)
Member of PEN Netherlands




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