Jovan Zivlak

Portrait Jovan Zivlak
© privat

Jovan Zivlak was born 1947 in Serbian Nakovo in Banat subregion of Vojvodina, near the Romanian border. He finished secondary school in Kikinda, and graduated from the University of Novi Sad with the degree in Serbian language and literature. Zivlak was editor in chief in Svetovi publishing 1985−2007. Now he is the manager of Adresa publishing. He is not only an publisher of postmodern literature and philosophy, but also editor-in-chief of the magazine for literature, art and culture »Zlatna greda« which he helped found in 2001 and head of the International Literature Festival in Novi Sad. Zivlak edited works of well known Serbian writers (Laza Kostić, Jovan Dučić, Dušan Vasiljev, Danilo Kiš, Milorad Pavić, etc.) and wrote studies about them.

Jovan Zivlak has published eleven poetry and three essay volumes in the Serbian language so far. His poems focus on the gaps in reality, and his poetry is influenced by the art of discretion, a stage for painful absence. Based on a distrust of the present, Zivlak refers to metaphysical knowledge and places the action of the subject over the modern in the foreground. As an expression of metaphysical self exploration his language transmits clear and solidly structured images, fragmentary impressions and deep reflections that seek to decode the mystery of the modern world. »Zivlak’s spiritual and philosophical views provide the backdrop to their own morphology of society and culture in which the ambivalent role of man in relation to nature is expressed and moreover, his position within his own culture and history is explored.« (Stevka Shmitran)

Zivlak’s poems are in important anthologies of Serbian poetry at home and abroad, have been translated into numerous languages and have received many awards. In addition to his literary works he has published a number of essays and monographs. Jovan Zivlak lives and works in Novi Sad.