Phew! What a year 2011 was for Shaun Tan. Despite having been awarded a lengthy roll call of accolades since 1992, the year just been was particularly monumental for this illustrator, visual artist, writer and director. After writing and illustrating “The Lost Thing” in the late 90’s as a passion project, March 2011 saw him walk the red carpet at Kodak Theatre in Hollywood at the 83rd Academy Awards® ceremony to accept the coveted golden statue for “Best Animated Short Film” as co-director. That same month, he also won the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award, the world’s biggest children’s literature award, a significantly visionary initiative from the Swedish government. With all this in mind, it would suffice to say that he knows a fair bit about how to weave a story together. We had a chat with Shaun about what it was like to be recognised with an Oscar, his creative process, and what’s important to him when he’s spinning a story.
Interview by: Rani Nugraha, editing by: Christiaan Grammer