2020 Hans Christian Andersen Award Winners

The International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY) has named author Jacqueline Woodson (USA) and illustrator Albertine (Switzerland) winners of the 2020 Hans Christian Andersen Awards.

Given every other year by IBBY, the awards recognize lifelong achievement and are presented to an author and an illustrator whose complete works have made an important, lasting contribution to children’s literature.

As author, Jacqueline Woodson has a prolific body of writing from picture books to young adult literature, all of which feature lyrical language, powerful characters, and an abiding sense of hope. As illustrator, Albertine creates books with multiple levels of interpretation, with drawings made with infinite precision that are lively and full of humour. 

The criteria used to assess the nominations included “the aesthetic and literary quality as well as the freshness and innovation of each nominee’s work; the ability to see the child’s point of view and to stretch their curiosity; and the continuing relevance of the work to children and young people.” The Award is based on the entire body of work.

IBBY National sections submitted 34 author nominees and 36 illustrator nominees. The jury deliberated each nominee, carefully and thoroughly assessing each candidate while maintaining discussions related to the criteria.

The Author’s Award has been given since 1956, and the Illustrator’s Award since 1966. The winners each receive a gold medal and a diploma.

2020 Hans Christian Andersen Award Winners

Jacqueline Woodson

She made her debut as an author in 1990 with Last Summer With Maizon, the first book in a trilogy about a friendship between two girls. In the same year she also published The Dear One, a story about teen pregnancy. Her thirty-three books and thirteen short stories range in subjects from foster care to interracial relationships, from drug abuse to the witness protection programme, but all share the common features of lyrical language, powerful characters, and an abiding sense of hope. In 2014, her autobiographical work Brown Girl Dreaming was the winnerof the National Book Award and Coretta Scott King Award and is a Newbery Honor book. It is the centrepiece of her oeuvre: her first-hand experiences of how African-Americans were treated differently in the North and South, where her own path to becoming a writer is woven in with her life experiences. Jacqueline Woodson was a Finalist for the 2016 Hans Christian Andersen Award and won the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award in 2018. After serving as Young People’s Poet Laureate from 2015-17 she was named National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature for 2018-19.

Albertine

Among her most important books for children are the titles: La rumeur de Venise (The Venice rumour, 2009)which was selected for the 2010 IBBY Honour List; Les Oiseaux (Little bird, 2011); Les Gratte-Ciel (Sky high, 2011); and Ligne 135 (Line 135, 2012). Her book, Mon tout petit (My little one, 2015), an endless embrace between mother and child that unwinds in a flipbook, was selected for the 2016 IBBY Honour List; it won the 2016 Bologna Ragazzi Award and won the Green Island Award at the Nami Island Concours in 2017. She was a Finalist for the 2018 Hans Christian Andersen Award and her book, Les Oiseaux, was included in the list of books highlighted by the Andersen Jury as an outstanding work.

Bookbird profiles of the winners and shortlist can be viewed here.

[Based on a press release.]

2018 Hans Christian Andersen Award Winners

The International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY) has named author Eiko Kadono (Japan) and illustrator Igor Oleynikov (Russia) winners of the 2018 Hans Christian Andersen Awards.

Given every other year by IBBY, the awards recognize lifelong achievement and are presented to an author and an illustrator whose complete works have made an important, lasting contribution to children’s literature.

Kadono wrote Japanese classic Kiki’s Delivery Service, which was adapted for the screen by Studio Ghibli.

Here is the text of the citations:

Eiko Kadono from Japan

There is an ineffable charm, compassion, and élan in the work of this great Japanese author.  Whether in her many marvellous and funny picture books, or her great series of novels about the witch Kiki, or her novel set during World War II about a brave girl who must walk through a terrifying tunnel of trees to get to school, Kadono’s books are always surprising, engaging, and empowering.  And almost always fun. And always life affirming.

Although, Kadono has travelled widely throughout the world, her stories are deeply rooted in Japan and show us a Japan that is filled with all kinds of unexpected people.  Her female characters are singularly self-determining and enterprising; figuring out how to cope with all kinds of complications without suffering too many self-doubts – though some of these do creep in.  As such, they are perfect for this time when we are all seeking girls and women in books who can inspire and delight us with their agency. The language in her picture books is notable for its playfulness and use of onomatopoeia. And of course, the beautiful, but simple language in her novels makes them extremely readable.

Igor Oleynikov from Russia

This exceptional illustrator can bring the page alive in a way that must be the envy of his peers. Coming from an early career as an animator, Oleynikov is a master of design and composition.  Furthermore, he brings an extraordinary cast of characters to life –from young boys and girls, to witches and giants, to wolves and sharks, to fairies and trolls, to Joshua and Ruth from the Old Testament, to even a brilliant tiny mouse who goes to Harvard!  Though he claims not to like illustrating ‘cute’ children, he is more than capable of creating beauty – in his landscapes and in his characters.  Beautiful or not, human or not, they burst with life, movement and expression.

Oleynikov brings the great Russian artistic vocabulary, style and passion to his work.  He frequently illustrates the Russian masters, Pushkin, Gogol, Trotsky, Brodsky, bringing them to life and to our contemporary sensibility. His versions of the classics are always original and surprising, never obvious or what one might expect. He is equally brilliant with Andersen, Grimm, the Old Testament, and Lear. While he excels at the short form—poems, stories, traditional tales, he can also create fabulous picture books. His talent knows no bounds.

The award jurors were:

  • Lola Rubio (Argentina) – an editor and librarian
  • Yasmine Motawy (Egypt) – a professor of children’s literature
  • Eva Kaliskami (Greece) – a teacher
  • Yasuko Doi (Japan) – an international children’s librarian
  • Shereen Kreidieh (Lebanon) – a children’s publisher
  • Denis Beznosov (Russia) – an international children’s librarian
  • Andrej Ilc (Slovenia) – a publisher of adult and children’s books
  • Reina Duarte (Spain) – a children’s publisher
  • María Beatriz Medina (Venezuela) – director of the Banco del Libro and a professor
  • Junko Yokota (USA) – a children’s literature specialist

Also announced were winners of the IBBY-Asahi Reading Promotion Award:

Les Doigts Qui Rêvent (LDQR), which was created in 1993 as a response to the observation: a total lack of access to Tactile illustrated Books (TiBs) for visually impaired children in France, Europe and the world.

[Thanks to Chip Hitchcock for the story. This story will be scraped by Locus in 5…4….3…]

2014 Hans Christian Andersen Award Winners

hans christian andersen awardThe International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY) has named author Nahoko Uehashi (Japan) and illustrator Roger Mello (Brazil) winners of the 2014 Hans Christian Andersen Award.

Uehashi is best known in the English-speaking world as the author of Seirei no Moribito, and through its anime adaptation Moribito: Guardian of the Spirit which aired several ago.

The Andersen medals and diplomas will be presented to the winners at the 34th International IBBY Congress in Mexico City, Wednesday, 10 September 2014. 

Also announced were winners of the IBBY-Asahi Reading Promotion Award: The Children’s Book Bank (Toronto) and PRAESA (South Africa).

2014 Hans Christian Andersen Award Jury and Nominees

In alternate years the International Board on Books for Young People presents its Hans Christian Andersen Awards to “a living author and illustrator whose complete works have made a lasting contribution to children’s literature.”

IBBY has revealed the 2014 Hans Christian Andersen Award nominees and jury members.

For the 2014 Awards 29 authors and 31 illustrators have been nominated from 34 countries. 

  • Argentina: author María Cristina Ramos; illustrator Isol
  • Australia; author Nadia Wheatley; illustrator Ron Brooks
  • Austria: author Renate Welsh; illustrator Linda Wolfsgruber
  • Azerbaijan: author Sevinj Nurugizi
  • Belgium: author Frank Andriat; illustrator Carll Cneut
  • Brazil: author Joel Rufino dos Santos; illustrator Roger Mello
  • Canada: author Kenneth Oppel; illustrator Philippe Béha
  • China: author Hongying Yang; illustrator Liang Xiong
  • Croatia: illustrator Svjetlan Junakovi
  • Denmark: author Lene Kaaberbøl; illustrator Charlotte Pardi
  • Estonia: author Aino Pervik
  • Finland: author Kirsi Kunnas; illustrator Pekka Vuori
  • France: author Jean-Claude Mourlevat; illustrator François Place
  • Germany: author Mirjam Pressler; illustrator Rotraut Susanne Berner
  • Greece: author Sofia Madouvalou; illustrator Daniela Stamatiadi
  • Iran: author Houshang Moradi Kermani
  • Ireland: author Eoin Colfer; illustrator PJ Lynch
  • Italy: author Bianca Pitzorno; illustrator Fabian Negrin
  • Japan: author Nahoko Uehashi; illustrator Ken Katayama
  • Republic of Korea: author Jin-Kyung Kim; illustrator Byoung-Ho Han
  • Latvia: illustrator Reinis P?tersons
  • Netherlands: author Ted van Lieshout; illustrator Marit Törnqvist
  • Norway: author Bjørn Sortland; illustrator Øyvind Torseter
  • Portugal: author António Torrado; illustrator Teresa Lima
  • Russia: author Vladislav Krapivin; illustrator Igor Oleinikov
  • Serbia: author Ljubivoje Ršumovi?; illustrator Dobrosav Živkovi
  • Slovakia: author Daniel Hevier; illustrator Peter Uchnár
  • Slovenia: author Polonca Kova; illustrator Alenka Sottler
  • Spain: illustrator Javier Zabala
  • Sweden: illustrator Eva Lindström
  • Switzerland: illustrator Albertine
  • Turkey: author Serpil Ural; illustrator Saadet Ceylan
  • UK: author Jacqueline Wilson; illustrator John Burningham
  • USA: author Jacqueline Woodson; illustrator Bryan Collier

Congratulations to Eoin Colfer of Ireland, who has featured on File 770 before.

The award’s Jury President will guide the judging and preside over the jury meeting March 15-16, 2014.  The shortlist will be disseminated immediately following the meeting and the winners will be announced at the IBBY Press Conference at the Bologna Children’s Book Fair on March 24, 2014.

Eoin Colfer at 2009 Wexworlds Library Talk

Eoin Colfer at 2009 Wexworlds Library Talk.