TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwanese comic artist Wu Shih-hung (吳識鴻) has won this year’s Belgian Raymond Leblanc Prize, becoming the first Taiwanese and non-European to receive the award, the Ministry of Culture (MOC) said in a press release on Saturday (Sept. 11).
The comic, entitled “Storms over Hills and Ocean” (山風海雨), was adapted from the first chapter of the same name of renowned Taiwanese writer and poet Yang Mu’s (楊牧) autobiography. It was one of FisFisa Media company’s (目宿媒體) literary adaption projects to promote works of literature through other forms of media, reported CNA.
According to the Raymond Leblanc Association, which is named after the publisher of famed Belgian comic “The Adventures of Tintin,” the prize “has become the best endowed competition and the most prestigious for young talents in comic.” The prize rewards only one winner, who along with €10,000 (NT$326,895) receives a contract to publish the work with Le Lombard, an additional €10,000 in prepaid rights, and 10% of the comic's selling price as a share of royalties.
CNA reported that Wu had submitted a five-page draft as part of the proposal and that the judges agreed his work had “jumped out immediately.”
Now that the comic will be published in French in addition to Chinese, FisFisa Media said it has provided Wu the opportunity to submit “Storms over Hills and Ocean” to the Angouleme International Comics Festival, the biggest festival of its kind in Europe that only accepts works in French.
In recent years, the MOC has dedicated much effort to promoting Taiwanese comics around the world with the objective to make them “another key hallmark of Taiwan’s culture.” It said it will continue to develop the “content power” of Taiwanese comics and work with the Taiwan Creative Content Agency to expand the country's comics market and nurture talents.