It’s official now, so I can actually dispense with the news here: Antonia Lloyd-Jones has received this year’s Found in Translation Award for her translation of Paweł Huelle’s The Last Supper (Serpent’s Tail, 2008). The award will be conferred in London on May 13th during the European Literature Night, and Huelle himself will be doing the honors.
Here’s the rest of the press release from the Polish Cultural Institute in London:
The Last Supper is set in Gdańsk and centres on a single day in the near future, when twelve men have been invited by their mutual friend, an artist, to model at a photographic session for a modern version of The Last Supper. The histories of the twelve men are revealed through their thoughts on that day: their wayward behaviour is a reflection of the role of the Church in Polish society today. The reunion is disturbed as a wave of terrorist bombs paralyses the city, creating upheaval and a sense of unease.
The awarded book has been praised by literary critics both for Huelle’s writing and Lloyd-Jones’ translation. The Independent wrote:
‘An intelligent, intriguing and atmospheric novel worthy of its inspiration. It is admirably served by Antonia Lloyd-Jones’ nuanced and readable translation’.
Antonia Lloyd-Jones is one of the finest translators of Polish literature into English. Born in 1962, she read Russian and Ancient Greek at Oxford. Her published translations from Polish include novels by Paweł Huelle and Olga Tokarczuk, short stories by Jarosław Iwaszkiewicz, and non-fiction, most recently by Ryszard Kapuściński and Wojciech Tochman. Her translations of poetry have appeared in periodicals including The Edinburgh Review.
The Found in Translation Award was co-founded by the Polish Book Institute, the Polish Cultural Institute in London, the Polish Cultural Institute in New York, and W.A.B. Publishers. The winner will receive PLN 10,000 (ca £2,000) as well as a three-month scholarship from the Polish Book Institute.
The first Found in Translation Award went to Bill Johnston last year for his translation of Tadeusz Różewicz’s New Poems (Archipelago, 2007).