The Mediterranean Laboratory Foundation of Naples and Alpe Adria Cinema of Trieste instituted, under the presidency of Predrag Matvejevic’, the Prize “Sarajevo, with the aim to acknowledge the work of a Bosnian artist.
In its first edition the Prize has been awarded to Abdulah Sidran, poet and scriptwriter who ranks high in the European literature of our time, thanks to his creative activity in the contemporary literary panorama of Bosnia and ex Yugoslavia.

Sidran’s poetry has always dealt with strong concrete themes and with civic anxieties, giving rise to very effective representations of real life during the years of Sarajevo siege (1992-1995). In a situation of real and extreme danger for his city, its inhabitants and himself, Sidran went on working, loyal to Sarajevo and to its ancient habit to accept different religions, cultures, writings, traditions and languages.
Sarajevo, a cosmopolitan city, a place where differences meet and are re-elaborated, is the heart of Sidran’s poetry. The secret of this town and of this poetry lies in the “endless tolerance” mentioned by Sidran in his writings.

The Prize includes granting of 5 million liras to the Author and covering of the publishing costs of a new work of his, to be completed within a few months. The volume, published by the Mediterranean Laboratory Foundation in collaboration with Edizioni “e” of Trieste, contains all Sidran’s “siege poems” as well as a large choice of its previous production, keeping the original Bosnian text with a translation on the opposite page.
This volume will be presented during the meetings on the theme “The Mediterranean and the Cinema of Middle-Eastern Europe”, organized in collaboration with the Associazione Alpe Adria Cinema of Trieste, to be held in Naples in July 1996.