Taiwan Cultural Landscape Illustrated by Taiwan pavilion at 2014 Frankfurt Book Fair

(From Left) Feature Writer Yung-shan TSOU, Chair of TBFF Doris WANG, ROC representative to Germany Hwa-Yue CHEN and Feature Graphic Novelists AKRU & Guang-Min RUAN.

The Taiwan pavilion at the 2014 Frankfurt Book Fair, co-hosted by the Ministry of Culture of Taiwan and the Taipei Book Fair Foundation (TBFF), opened Oct. 8, showcasing a diverse array of illustrated novels based on Taiwan’s unique culture and history. The eclectic styles and fantasy-infused themes met with wide acclaim from international publishers.


ROC representative to Germany Hwa-Yue CHEN made a speech in German and Mandarin at the opening ceremony. She said the creative, multifaceted cornucopia of Taiwan’s cultural assets were underscored by the “Made in Taiwan”-themed pavilion, which combined seasonal elements with traditional customs in its design, while displaying a wide range of local writings on Taiwan’s culture, food and travel.


The chair of TBFF Doris WANG said Taiwan Pavilion recommended two featured graphic novelists Guang-Min RUAN and AKRU in response to the wave of graphic novelists from Europe and America. The recommended writers for the 2014 Frankfurt book fair also included Taiwanese fictionist Yung-Shan TSOU, who is presently based in Germany, and local Tainan writer Michelle WANG who is famed for the everyday aesthetics featured in her books "The Way of Tainan" and "Living in Tainan."


Of the two feature artists at this year’s Taiwan pavilion, Guang-min RUAN has already had the German translations of his books, done by a German translator so enamored of his works that he volunteered to take up the task. “AKRU Art Works,” a collection of AKRU’s illustrations just out in October, also attracted the substantial interest of publishing professionals from various countries.


Guests at the opening ceremony included Peter Weidhaas, Honorary Chairman of the Conference of International Book Fairs; Holger Volland, Vice President of the Frankfurt Book Fair; Roberta Chinni, Director of the Bologna Children's Book Fair; Elena Pasoli, Group Product Manager of the Bologna Children's Book Fair; Marisol Schulz, Director of the Guadalajara International Book Fair; David Unger, Representative for the Guadalajara Book Fair in the United States; Kevin Chapman, Former President of Publishers Association of New Zealand and the Project Director of the New Zealand GOH at 2015 TIBE; Oliver Zille, Director of Leipzig Book Fair; Paz Corral Yagnam, the Representative from Educaria Zig Zag; James Cox, Program Officer at Australia Council for the Arts; Montse Aumatell, Events and Export Manager of Australian Publishers Association; Gabriel Nieto, Latin American Rights Director of Grupo Planeta; Edward Nawotka, Editor in Chief of Publishing Perspectives etc.

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