Christian Andersen Award

Queen of Denmark refused to patronize the Andersen Award because of a Russian in the Jury


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Queen Margrethe II of Denmark refused to patronize the Hans Christian Andersen Award because Russian illustrator Anastasia Arkhipova was named the President of the Jury. This is reported by the Danish edition DR.


The award was removed from the list of foreign projects that took place under the patronage of the Queen on the website of the Royal Palace. The mention of royal patronage also disappeared from the IBBY website.


The Hans Christian Andersen Award, founded in 1956, is awarded every two years by IBBY International to writers and illustrators for their outstanding contribution to children’s literature.


On October 28, 2022, IBBY published a statement condemning russia’s war against Ukraine and recalled the background of the organization: “IBBY was founded in the aftermath of World War II, when the devastation in Europe and much of the world had a profound impact on thousands of children and families. Yet Jella Lepman believed that this was the right time to come together to work for peace, understanding and tolerance through bringing literature to children. This was her motivation when she founded IBBY, and her vision continues to be our inspiration,” the organization’s website says. However, on November 18, IBBY announced the list of jury, which was headed by Russian illustrator and member of the Moscow Union of Artists Anastasia Arkhipova.


A number of local IBBY sections, in particular in Sweden, Norway, Finland, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Belgium, Moldova and Ukraine, demanded the resignation of the newly appointed President of the Andersen Award Jury.


As DR notes, the Danish IBBY divided into two camps and did not sign the letter demanding resignation. However, under public pressure, the Danes put forward a recommendation to remove Archipova, and at the same time Denis Beznosov from the post of vice-president of IBBY International, as the Danish IBBY notes on its official page.

Announcement on the IBBY website — January 3, 2023

Announcement on the IBBY website — January 5, 2023


On February 26, 2022, IBBY in the publication IBBY Statement on the Ukraine Conflict also expressed support for Ukraine and condolences to “friends and colleagues at IBBY Russia in Moscow and in St Petersburg, as they struggle to process this tragic situation.”


Queen Margrethe II of Denmark is one of the most involved monarchs in the sphere of culture. In her homeland she is known as an artist, designer, translator and illustrator of J. R. R. Tolkien’s works.


The next ceremony of the Award will take place in 2024, the nominees will be announced on March 6, 2023 at the Bologna Book Fair.


As a reminder, the winners of the Hans Christian Andersen Award 2022 are French writer Marie-Aude Murail and Korean artist Suzy Lee.


Also, two Ukrainians were included in the long lists of the Andersen Award 2022, author Halyna Malyk and illustrator Kost Lavro.