German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN)


Nature Writing 2018

German Prize for Nature Writing 2018 goes to Sabine Scho and Christian Lehnert

[Translate to en:] Scho(c)Holtmann
[Translate to en:] Lehnert(c)Thomas Klitzsch

Vilm, 17.07.2018 In 2018, the publishing house Matthes & Seitz Berlin is donating for the second time the German Prize for Nature Writing, endowed with 10,000 €, which is awarded annually to a selected German-language author. This time two authors will be considered. Part of the prize is a six-week writing stay on the island of Vilm at the International Academy for Nature Conservation of the Federal Agency for Nature Conservation, which is donated by the Federal Agency. During her stay (planned for 2019), the prizewinner will use the inspiring nature and beauty of the island for her own works and give public readings at Vilm and Rügen.
The recipients of the 2018 scholarship are Sabine Scho and Christian Lehnert, who have already received several awards for their works.
"Sabine Scho wants to 'interfere' with her artistic productions in the social discourses about the state of our natural environment and about the connections of our human nature to that of other living beings," said the jury's statement. "In addition, in continuation of the traditions of nature writing, she visits natural spaces herself for in-depth explorations, for example in Brazil or South Africa. With her repeatedly experimental artistic projects, she stands for a rare development of contemporary nature poetry in German-speaking countries".
In Christian Lehnert's poems, the jury pays particular tribute to the fact that "nature is more than just an object of perception and poetic processing. [...] The conciseness and evocative power of the individual nature pictures impresses here just as much as the sovereign use of the form of the ode, with which the manifold is captured, the incomprehensible made tangible".

The award ceremony will take place on 31 August 2018 in the Elias Kuppelsaal in Berlin.

The prize-winning literary tradition is a form of prose or poetry that focuses on animate and inanimate nature. While nature writing has been firmly established in the English-speaking world since the 18th and 19th centuries, this genre has become increasingly popular in German-speaking countries since the descriptions of nature in Romanticism.

The awarding of the Writers' Prize contributes both to establishing Nature Writing more strongly in German-speaking countries and to attracting more public attention to the topics of nature and nature conservation.