Shaun Tan


(One of Shaun Tan's illustrations for the book The Rabbits, above.)

Shaun Tan is an artist whose primary art form is picture books. He describes his books as "picture books for older readers, rather than young children." His themes are more mature than most picture books, including colonial imperialism, social apathy, depression and the nature of memory. Many of Shaun Tan's works have been adapted into performances, including a theatrical adaptation of my favorite of his books, The Red Tree. Here is a still shot from the play, matching the artistry of the book:


He has a new book coming out in February that I can't wait to get a hold of, called Tales From Outer Suburbia, an anthology of fifteen very short illustrated stories. Here is a peek into the upcoming book:


"We only have to wash and wax our missile on the first Sunday of every month."

This mural in a children's library in Australia is among Shaun Tan's other accomplishments: