Taiwanese manga artist Gao Yan (高妍) on Wednesday launched a standalone edition of the manga series Lu Zhih Ge (綠之歌) in Taiwan and Japan.
Gao has worked at manga artistry since childhood, and was working as an illustrator in 2018 when she published the critically lauded Lu Zhih Ge as a short story, the 25-year-old creator said at a book launch in Taipei.
“It is because of Lu Zhih Ge that I found my path as a manga artist,” she said.
Photo: CNA
The story — Gao’s first manga to be published — revolves around a young Taiwanese woman surnamed Lu (綠) and the real-life Japanese lyricist and musician Haruomi Hosono, who fronted the band Happy End, she said.
The independently published work garnered applause after Takashi Matsumoto, a member of the band, wrote a glowing review on social media.
The next year, Hosono traveled to Taiwan and invited Gao to join a production of No Smoking, a biographical documentary on Hosono that screened later that year.
Gao was also featured in several high-profile international exhibitions of manga art, and illustrated the cover for acclaimed novelist Haruki Murakami’s literary self-portrait Abandoning a Cat, When I Talk About My Father.
Gao last year developed Lu Zhih Ge into a full-length manga that was serialized in the Japanese-language magazine Comic Beam before publishing the series in a standalone of two volumes.
“I am just a regular Haruomi fan,” she said. “I never imagined Lu Zhih Ge would catch Takashi’s eye.”
She said that the story’s protagonist, Lu, is an homage to a character from the Murakami novel Norwegian Wood, whose given name contains the kanji that is rendered Lu (綠) in Chinese.
“I did not expect to draw my first real commercial illustration for Haruki either,” she added.
“I believe that Lu Zhih Ge has a power in its clumsy honesty that drew people in,” Gao said. “Creation can bring me to faraway places that I could never have reached on my own strength. This is the power of books.”
Although the title is serialized in Japan and tied to that country in context, the story is essentially Taiwanese, she said.
“I hope that the publication of this book can give confidence to Taiwanese and make them understand that they are from a talented country,” she said. “Young artists and authors should know that their creations have power.”
Lu Zhih Ge bears endorsements penned by Matsumoto and Murakami.
“Gao’s drawings are full of fresh air as if carried in a tunnel. It evokes a feeling of comfort and resonates with nostalgia,” Murakami wrote.
‘BUILD BRIDGES’: The US and China should look for ways to regain trust, despite China being ‘much more closed than it was 10 years ago,’ Thomas Friedman said Taiwan should make itself “indispensable” for the global economy and refrain from provoking China, three-time Pulitzer Prize winner Thomas Friedman told a business forum in Taipei yesterday. Friedman, who writes opinion articles about foreign affairs, globalization and technology for the New York Times, was commenting on Taiwan-US-China relations at a forum held by Taiwan-based Global Views monthly, in a pre-recorded video. “If I were president for a day of Taiwan, I would be focusing on building and reinforcing my strengths,” Friedman said. “Taiwan is the single greatest chipmaking country in the world, thanks to TSMC [Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co]. And I would be
IMPORT-DEPENDENT: US restrictions on the sales of semiconductor equipment to China could extinguish Beijing’s efforts to acquire advanced processes, a study said The US’ imposition of controls on chip exports to China might throttle Beijing’s plan to obtain breakthrough technologies in chip manufacturing, a study by the Taiwan Industry Economic Services said. US President Joe Biden in August signed the Creating Helpful Incentives to Produce Semiconductors (CHIPS) and Science Act, which authorizes US$52.7 billion of subsidies for US chipmakers while banning the export of chips more advanced than 28 nanometers to China for 10 years. It also imposes export controls on technologies linked to diamond and gallium oxide semiconductors, as well as software used in the design of complex circuits and gas turbines. South Korea’s
NO ‘SAFE SPACE’: Bob Chan, who was pulled into the consulate’s grounds during a protest, said Taiwan will hopefully never have its freedom curtailed by China Taiwanese could be targeted by Chinese aggression anywhere in the world and subjected to violence, a Hong Konger who is at the center of a diplomatic row between the UK and China, said on Wednesday. Bob Chan, who was on Sunday last week pulled into the grounds of the Chinese consulate in Manchester, England, and beaten by staff during a protest against the Chinese government, said Taiwanese should keep fighting to maintain the nation’s freedom in the face of China’s coercion. He and about 40 other democracy advocates were staging a demonstration outside the consulate when he was pulled inside the gates
SOCIAL DISORDER: Forty-five major criminal figures were among 269 suspects arrested in a major joint campaign by law-enforcement agencies to deter crime Law-enforcement authorities have arrested hundreds of suspected gang members and seized more than 50 illegal firearms after a major nationwide sweep to clamp down on criminal activities, the National Police Agency announced yesterday. Agency officials said that it was the fourth major joint campaign by law-enforcement agencies to crack down on organized crime as well as deter violence and vote-buying ahead of the Nov. 26 local elections. Forty-five major criminal figures were among 269 people arrested on suspicion of engaging in criminal activities, with authorities seizing 52 illegal firearms, ammunition and NT$4.23 million (US$131,415) in cash during raids, Criminal Investigation Bureau Commissioner


Shop Sephari