| Jean-Charles Sarrazin posing for commemorative photo with the high school students of Thuan Hoa High School.
Born in 1966, Jean-Charles Sarrazin is an illustrator affiliated with the L’Ecole des Loisirs & Bayard publishing houses in France. His forte lies in creating works for children. He graduated from the National School of Applied Arts and Crafts Olivier de Serres in 1987 and subsequently received a scholarship to study at the Vietnam School of Industrial Fine Arts.
From 1987 to 1988, he attended classes on traditional Vietnamese art forms such as wood carving, silk painting, lacquer painting, and in turn teaching other students on “European traditional art”. In Vietnam, Jean-Charles Sarrazin had the opportunity to meet renowned contemporary artists, such as Bui Xuan Phai, Buu Chi, and the poet - then Deputy Minister of Culture, Sports, and Tourism of Vietnam, Cu Huy Can.
During the course of more than 30 years of painting, Jean-Charles Sarrazin has built a fortune of over 40 works and albums for children. Many of his books have been translated into Vietnamese and published by Nha Nam Culture and Communication Joint Stock Company, including recent titles such as “Bonjour Madame la Mort” (“Xin chào cô, Thần Chết”), Graine d'amour (“Hạt giống yêu thương”), “Qu'est-ce que c'est que ça?” (“Cái gì thế nhỉ?”), “Parce que je t'aime...” (“Vì con yêu mẹ”), “Chào cô chào bác đi con” (Dis bonjour!”). There were also works that drew inspiration from Vietnamese folk tales, such as “Pirate Tétine”, “Fraise” (“Dâu tây”) and “L’intelligence” (“Trí khôn”).
His art style is unique, lovely and approachable, with diverse, vibrant character expressions and vivid colors. As an artist specializing in painting for children, Jean-Charles Sarrazin maintains a youthful spirit and a love for life, cherishing children and making time to connect with his own kids. He also has a special passion for sketching and photography, capturing the beauty of Vietnam's landscapes and its people during his journey to explore the S-shaped strip of land.
Coming to the Ancient Capital, Sarrazin took on the role of a storyteller, flipping through the pages of his books and conveying humane messages and life lessons to the students in a light-hearted and humorous manner. He moved through the rows of seats, allowing the students to observe his illustrations closely. Sarrazin provided direct guidance on drawing illustrations using a white board. His few strokes were simple yet still managed to capture the personalities of characters, like an innocent white rabbit or a cunning black wolf.
At the end of the discussion, the students practiced the exercise of drawing three different expressions for a character of their choice, making the young people excited as having the opportunity to play with colors. Jean-Charles Sarrazin then offered words of praise and encouragement for exceptionally impressive artworks, urging their creators to consider a future as illustration artists. He also presented the “young artists” of Thuan Hoa High School with an illustration from his own work, “L’intelligence.”
Also in October 2023, on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Vietnam and France, in addition to the discussion on illustration drawing and practice for students of Thuan Hoa High School at the Hue French Institute, Jean-Charles Sarrazin also visited the Marguerite Duras French International School and the La Petite École in Ho Chi Minh City, as well as the French Institutes in Da Nang and Hanoi.