(1914 - 2001)
"You can't ever be really free if you admire somebody too much.”  

Tove Jansson was brought up in Helsinki in perhaps the ideal household for creative talent to develop: her father was a sculptor and her mother an illustrator.

Her first book was published when she was only thirteen. She later studied art in Stockhom, Helsinki, Paris and Rome and is most famous for her books about a family of characters called the Moomins. The first two of these were published shortly after World War Two, but it was the translation into English of her third book, published in 1951, that brought her instant international success.

A comic strip commissioned by The London Evening Standard followed in 1954: within two years it was being run by 120 newspapers worldwide, with a total readership of 12 million.

Eventually, however, the pressure to deliver regular comic strips became a burden to Jansson, who felt it stifled her both as an author and as an artist.  As a result she dropped them in 1959, allowing her brother Lars to take over their production instead.

She continued to write, draw and paint until her death in 1971. Her later work included a series of six adult novels, the first of which was published in 1968,


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