French publishers visit Antwerp
Following the success of our Guest of Honour programme at the Frankfurt Book Fair last year, Flanders Literature and the Dutch Foundation for Literature are now focusing on another neighbouring country: France. On 1 March, fifteen French publishers of literature for children and young people, fiction and nonfiction came to visit us in Antwerp. We introduced them to Flemish publishers, authors, illustrators, translators and other specialists, with the aim of convincing them of the strength and quality of Flemish books. The hope is, of course, that this will encourage more translations into French.
Each group had a programme tailored to their interests. A highlight of the programme for the nonfiction publishers was a tour of the Mayer van den Bergh Museum, led by Leen Huet, while authors Ivo Victoria and Saskia de Coster talked to the fiction publishers about their work, and children’s authors Aline Sax, Jan De Leeuw and Jef Aerts read from their books.
Representatives from Denoël, Editions Héloïse d’Ormesson, Fayard, Gallimard, Grasset, Actes Sud and Seuil attended an interview with authors Elvis Peeters (a team of two, left) and Kris Van Steenberge (right).
Illustrators Pieter Gaudesaboos and Sabien Clement introduced themselves and their work to publishers from Little Urban, Milan, Versant sud, P’tit Glénat and Alice Editions.
Illustrator Mattias De Leeuw drew his ‘Circus Night’ (Circusnacht) live, his most recent publication, a wordless picture book.
Bart Van Loo talked about his books on France to nonfiction publishers from Robbert Laffont, Editions Le Pommier and Vuibert.
Photography © Stefanie Luppens