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Hans Chr. Andersenprijzen 2016

Zojuist zijn de winnaars van de Hans Chr. Andersenprijzen 2016 bekend gemaakt. De prijs voor illustratoren gaat naar Rotraut Susanne Berner uit Duitsland en de prijs voor auteurs naar Cao Wenxuan uit China. Helaas dus geen Nederlander bij de prijzen.

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Uit het juryrapport:

Rotraut Susanne Berner : Berner’s work is at all times recognizably hers, while simultaneously being intensely responsive to the demands of the text, or in the case of the Wimmel Books, to the specific world of a very specific town. She is willing to take risks-The Princess Will Arrive at Four is a brilliant example of this as is the fairytale comic book, Definitely Not for the Little Ones, and When Death Came for a Visit, written by Jürg Schubiger. Her books can be hilariously funny, and equally deeply moving. And she doesn’t fear showing life’s dark moments. The Wimmel Books are an exemplar of how to construct an elaborate and complex world filled with small important narratives that can engage the viewer for hours through purely visual story telling power. Berner never talks down to her audience and yet her books are unmistakably for children. Children all over the world deserve to be exposed to her brilliant, humane, rich, emotionally true and deeply engaging books.

Cao Wenxuan: The unanimous choice of the jury, Cao writes beautifully about the complex lives of children facing great challenges. He is a deeply committed writer, whose own difficult childhood has been deeply influential on his writing in which there are no easy answers. In Bronze and Sunflower, a novel set during the time of the Cultural Revolution in a rural Chinese village close to a re-education center for people sent from the city, a village boy who does not speak and a little city girl who ends up coming to live with his family can be said to “save” each other. These children are entirely convincing and we care deeply about their fate. In Cao’s Dingding Dangdang series we are captivated and moved by two brothers with Down syndrome who separately flee their village and then search for each other through a world that is alternately loving and rejecting. These books take risks and have a great deal at stake.

Cao Wenxuan’s books don’t lie about the human condition; they acknowledge that life can often be tragic and that children can suffer. At the same time, they can love and be redeemed by their human qualities and the kindness they sometimes find when they are most in need. Cao’s writing about the natural world is lyrical and beautiful. And Cao is a great example of how writing wonderful prose and telling stories about brave children facing tremendous difficulties and challenges can attract a very wide and committed child readership as well as helping to shape a literary tradition in China that honors the realities of children’s worlds. Recently Cao Wenxuan’s books have been making their way into the world and have found enthusiastic readers in England, France, Germany, Italy, and Korea. The rest of the world’s children are waiting to discover him, too.

Nederlandse nomionaties:

Schrijver Ted van Lieshout en illustrator Marit Törnqvist waren door IBBY-Nederland  genomineerd voor de Hans Christian Andersenprijs, de tweejaarlijkse internationale oeuvreprijs voor kinderboekenmakers. Het was voor het eerst dat twee Nederlanders op de shortlist van in totaal tien makers staan. Bij de vorige editie van de prijs, in 2014, haalde Van Lieshout ook al de shortlist, voor Törnqvist was het de eerste keer. Het bereiken van de shortlist is zeker een mooie bekroning van je werk als auteur of illustrator. Maar laten we eerlijk zijn, de prijs is natuurlijk veel mooier. De enige Nederlandse kinderboekenmakers die ooit onderscheiden werden met de prijs, die sinds 1956 wordt uitgereikt, zijn Annie M.G. Schmidt (in 1988) en Kikker-tekenaar Max Velthuijs (in 2004).

Kleine Nobelprijs

De Hans Christian Andersenprijs wordt ook wel de ‘kleine Nobelprijs’ genoemd. Kandidaten voor de longlist van de Andersenprijs worden aangedragen door IBBY, een internationaal netwerk voor jeugdliteratuur.

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