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Ted van Lieshout

The Netherlands

┬ęBen Kleyn

Ted van Lieshout (1955) is a (children’s) writer, poet and visual artist. He has more than fifty books to his name and has won almost as many prizes. In 2009, he received the Theo Thijssen Prize for children’s and youth literature for his entire oeuvre and Rond vierkant vierkant rond (Circle square square circle) (Leopold, 2015) was awarded a Zilveren Griffel (Silver Stylus). Visual sonnets are at the heart of this unique book, which is supplemented by short poems and a brief poetry course for young people. According to De Volkskrant newspaper, as the visual aspect is the main focus “…poetry is even accessible to anyone who doesn’t enjoy reading.” Poems by Van Lieshout are characterised by recognisable subjects, a melancholy aspect and are often teamed with drawings.


“In ‘Rond vierkant vierkant rond’, Ted van Lieshout gives children an outstanding crash course in poetry. A poet wants you, as he explains, ‘to sample the words as if you have never seen them before. A story is a different matter: the writer wants to draw you into the story so much that you quickly forget that you are reading words.'” Bas Maliepaard writing in the Dutch newspaper Trouw.