Author Baek Hee-na Wins World's Most Prestigious Children's Book Prize

  • By Kim Kyung-eun

    April 01, 2020 10:51

    Baek Hee-na

    Baek Hee-na, children's book author and illustrator, has become the first Korean to win the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award.

    The ALMA jury on Tuesday announced this year's winner, who receives a prize of 5 million Swedish kronor (around W600 million, US$1=W1,224).

    The award, which is the world's largest children's book prize, was established by the Swedish government in 2002 to honor Swedish writer Astrid Lindgren (1907-2002), best known for her "Pippi Longstocking" and "Emil of Lönneberga" series.

    "With exquisite feeling for materials, looks and gestures, Baek Hee-na's filmic picture books stage stories about solitude and solidarity. In her evocative miniature worlds, cloud bread and sorbet moons, animals, bath fairies and people converge. Her work is a doorway to the marvelous: sensuous, dizzying and sharp," the jury said.

    After hearing the news, Baek said, "It's unreal. I can't believe it."

    Among her dozen books, the most famous is "Cloud Bread," for which she won the Illustrator of the Year award at the Bologna Children's Book Fair in 2005.

    The book was translated in France, Germany, Japan, Norway and Taiwan, and made into a children's musical and a TV animation.

    Born in 1971, Baek graduated from Ewha Womans University in Seoul with a major in educational technology and studied animation at the California Institute of the Arts in the U.S. 

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