Posts Tagged ‘Anna Höglund’

Jury member Anna Höglund awarded the Nils Holgersson-plaque

September 29, 2014
Photo: Stefan Tell

Photo: Stefan Tell

Today the Swedish Library Association announced Anna Höglund as the recipient of this year’s Nils Holgersson-plaque for her book “Om detta talar man endast med kaniner” (approx. Things you only talk about with rabbits”). Anna Höglund is an author, illustrator and member of the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award jury.

The citation of the jury:

Living looks so easy for some people. They are who they are; they live their lives; they talk about everyday things. Other people spend their lives out on thin ice, questioning with every step what is real, what is true.

This year, the Nils Holgersson Plaque goes to a picture book that is not for children: a lyrical picture book for adults and young adults about the feeling of being an outsider and the desire to find a greater community. Anna Höglund succeeds in portraying a emotional sensitivity that is almost impossible to describe in words. There is a vulnerability in the way she draws, a fragility and a presence in her pictures. A way out of loneliness does exist, and if we really look, we can find similarities between ourselves and others. A rabbit can be a trusted comrade, and though we might sometimes be our own worst enemies, we can also be our own best friends. This is a deeply affecting picture book. It goes straight to the gut, straight to the heart.

The award ceremony is held on October 20 at the Stockholm City Library.

The Nils Holgersson-plaque was established in 1950 and is awarded annually to the author of the best book for children and young adults the previous year. The plaque is administrated by the Swedish Library Association.

The first recipient of the plaque was Astrid Lindgren, who received the prize for her book Nils Karlsson-Pyssling.

Link to the Swedish Library Association here.

Hello there, Anna Höglund

July 8, 2014
Photo: Stefan Tell

Photo: Stefan Tell

Anna Höglund is considered one of Sweden’s leading illustrators. Since July 1 she is member of the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award jury.

Tell us about yourself. Who is Anna Höglund?

Born and raised in Stockholm. Five children, one dog, one cat, six chickens and a nice husband.

Never had any time for school and authority figures. Quit school in eighth grade and left home.

Reading, writing and drawing have always been my lifeline. I published my first picture book at the age of 20, thinking it would be a good way to fund my painting career. I was terribly disappointed by the financial outcome, but all I wanted to do after that was to create picture books. For me it’s the ultimate form of expression.

Your latest book, Om detta talar man endast med kaniner (This Is Something You Talk About Only With Rabbits), has attracted a lot of attention and was nominated for the 2013 August Literary Award, among other prizes. It has been described as “one of this year’s boldest and most ambitious Swedish picture books,because it takes the sadness of the young protagonist very seriously, and because it stands out as a picture book about and for teenagers.” How did the book come to be?

I wanted to console a certain 13-year-old. However, as the young person concerned correctly pointed out, it is perhaps mostly about myself. Pictures can sometimes express what lies behind the words.

It can be helpful to tackle subjects that people find it hard to talk about. The way fairytales and dreams do.

Isol, last year’s ALMA recipient, believes that a book actually has two authors: one for the text and one for the pictures. Do you agree?

Yes, when I’m illustrating someone else’s work. But sometimes, when I’m creating my own stories, text and pictures flow together and can’t really be separated.

What will you be reading in your hammock this summer?

Jeanette Winterson’s book about art will last me a long time. I’ll read half a page, let my thoughts wander, have a nap, wake up invigorated and read some more.

New members of the jury for the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award

June 10, 2014

The Swedish Arts Council has appointed four new members of the jury for the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award. The new chairman from July 1 is Boel Westin, who has been Professor of Literature at Stockholm University since 1998, with a special focus on literature for children and young adults. She is Chief Editor of A History of Swedish Children´s Literature which is due to be published next year and internationally well-known for her biography on Tove Jansson.

Boel Westin. Photo: Eva Dalin

Boel Westin. Photo: Eva Dalin

– It’s an honour and an interesting task that I’m really looking forward to, says Boel Westin. The award has an important place in international children’s literature and it will be exciting to discuss all the nominees with my new colleagues.

The other new jury members are author and illustrator Anna Höglund, author Katarina Kieri and political science graduate Johan Palmberg, who represents Astrid Lindgren’s family. Previous chairman Larry Lempert will remain on the jury as an ordinary member for one year, while the others have been appointed for a period of four years.

Anna Höglund and Katarina Kieri have both won multiple awards for their books. Anna Höglund, who illustrates other people’s books as well as her own, most recently won the Snowball award for best Swedish picture book for Om detta talar man endast med kaniner (You only talk about this with rabbits) and has previously received prizes including the German Children’s Literature Award, the August Prize and the Elsa Beskow Plaque.

Katarina Kieri has published novels, poetry collections and ten books for children and young adults. Her awards include the August Prize, Tidningen Vi’s Literature Prize and the Astrid Lindgren Prize. Her latest children’s book Månkan och jag har en hemlighet (Månkan and I have a secret), which came out earlier this year, is a co-operation with illustrator Emma Virke.

Johan Palmberg recently moved back to Sweden after a year in London and, like his predecessor Annika Lindgren, works at Saltkråkan AB on copyright issues concerning the works of Astrid Lindgren.

– The Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award has a jury whose expertise is both broad and deep, comments Staffan Forssell, Director General of the Swedish Arts Council. Like their predecessors, the new members possess both knowledge and integrity, while the fact that Larry Lempert is staying on brings continuity to the work of the jury.

The new jury members replace Mats Berggren, Ulf Boëthius, Ulla Rhedin and Annika Lindgren. The new jury will meet for the first time in August and will announce the nominees for the 2015 award at the Frankfurt Book Fair in October.

Anna Höglund. Photo: Stefan Tell. Lilla Piratförlaget.

Anna Höglund. Photo: Stefan Tell. Lilla Piratförlaget.

Katarina Kieri. Photo: Daniel Werkmäster

Katarina Kieri. Photo: Daniel Werkmäster


Johan Palmberg. Photo: Saltkråkan

Johan Palmberg. Photo: Saltkråkan

The boy, the girl and the wall

February 27, 2011

The Swedish writer Ulf Stark (nominated to the 2011 Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award) travelled to the West Bank last year. In the Palestinian territories, his book Can you whistle, Johanna? is very popular and he was invited to read from the book and speak about his work.  During his visit he also met with the Tamer Institute for Community Education, the organization which won the 2009 Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award for its tireless work to promote reading among children and youth on the West Bank and Gaza.

While traveling through the West Bank, Ulf Stark came up with the idea of a new book: Pojken, flickan och muren (The boy, the girl and the wall). Following his trip, the illustrator Anna Höglund (nominated to the 2011 Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award) also visited the West Bank to collect inspiration and to make sketches for illustrations to Ulf Stark’s text.

And now, less than a year later, the result of the trips is here:  A beautiful and poetic tale about two children’s resourcefulness living in the shadow of a wall.

Pojken, flickan och muren is published in Swedish by Berghs Förlag and in Arabic by Dar Al Muna simultaneously – an unique publishing project for an unique book .