Skip to main content

Prešeren Awards

Prešeren Awards and Prešeren Fund Awards are the highest recognition in the Republic of Slovenia for achievements in the field of artistic creation. The Prešeren Award is given to artists who have permanently enriched Slovenian cultural heritage with their outstanding artistic achievements during their lifetime’s work. The Prešeren Fund Award is given to artists for their outstanding artistic achievements that have been presented to the public in the three years prior to the award and enrich Slovenian cultural heritage.

The presentation of the awards for contributions in the area of culture dates back to 1946. By way of an act adopted in 1955, the awards were named after France Prešeren, the greatest Slovene poet. At the beginning, the awards were not only given for artistic achievements, but were also presented to academicians, scientists, researchers and innovators. Since 1961, the awards, divided into Prešeren Awards and Prešeren Fund Awards, have been given solely for artistic endeavours. The number of awards presented varied until the adoption of an act at the end of 1981. At that time, the number of awards presented was limited to a maximum of three Prešeren Awards and a maximum of ten Prešeren Fund Awards. In accordance with the legislative amendment of 1991, the number of awards was further reduced to a maximum of two Prešeren Awards and a maximum of six Prešeren Fund Awards. The law provides that Prešeren Awards and Prešeren Fund Awards are presented by the Prešeren Fund Management Board at a ceremony to mark Prešeren Day, the Slovenian national cultural holiday. As a rule, an individual may win the Prešeren Award only once.


Prešeren Awards have been established in recognition of the fact that we, as a nation, have developed through our cultural and scientific creativity. Prešeren Awards recognise, set the criteria for and promote outstanding creative achievements. It is the name of France Prešeren more than any other that exudes the universal significance of exceptional artistic creativity and proud national awareness, bringing together different types of creative endeavour and different means of expression. Prešeren Awards have maintained their credibility over time, impelling us to assess artistic creativity with great care and responsibility.