Sonny Liew's ‘The Art of Charlie Chan Hock Chye’ gets 6 Eisner nominations

Sonny Liew’s acclaimed graphic novel “The Art of Charlie Chan Hock Chye” has once again broken new ground, netting six nominations at this year’s Eisner Awards, the most ever attained by a Singaporean.

Among the categories Liew’s book is in the running for are “Best Writer/Artist” and “Best Graphic Album-New”.

While “The Art of Charlie Chan Hock Chye” tells the story of a fictional character, it includes historical figures like Lee Kuan Yew and Lim Chin Siong, as well as events like the Hock Lee bus riots and Operation Spectrum.

In a Facebook post on Wednesday (3 May), the 42-year-old said that while the six nominations may mean “six times the pain in July”, he was “appreciating the dream for now”.

Singaporean writer/artist Sonny Liew. (Photo: Adam Tun-Aung)

A day before the launch of the graphic novel, Liew had an $8,000 grant from the National Arts Council (NAC) withdrawn.

At that time, a senior director at the NAC said the grant was withdrawn because of the graphic novel’s “sensitive content”, which did not meet the NAC’s funding conditions.

The book went on to become a best seller, selling out several times.

The Art of Charlie Chan Hock Chye, a new graphic novel by Singaporean creator Sonny Liew. Picture courtesy of Epigram Books.

Here are the categories which “The Art of Charlie Chan Hock Chye” is nominated for at the Eisner Awards:

  • Best Graphic Album–New
  • Best US Edition of International Material–Asia
  • Best Writer/Artist
  • Best Coloring
  • Best Lettering
  • Best Publication Design

The Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards, named after American cartoonist and writer Will Eisner, are the comic book industry’s equivalent of the Oscars.

The nominations are made by a five-member panel, and professionals from the industry will vote for the winners at the annual San Diego Comic-Con in July.

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