| [press]

Alfabéta Award - Exhibition of 2007 and 2008 Alfabéta Award Winners

Exhibition date: 
14 May - 14 June 2008

A tradition was started at the second Hungarian Comics Festival (2006), whereby, at the greatest comics event of the year, artists receive the Alpfabéta prize for the best works of the preceding year. The prize is awarded by a professional jury of 30 members for works that have made the greatest contribution towards dispelling stereotypes and misbeliefs about comics. This year, too, prizes (now officially considered as an award by the Hungarian Comic Publishers’ Association) were handed out in 4 categories: “comic book” signifies a long, at least 20-page long work published as a single volume or in continuous parts; “comic short story” stands for shorter stories on 3-19 pages mostly published in anthologies in one piece; “comic minute” denotes 1-2-page, “one-minute” pieces; and, finally, “comic strip” consisting of a series of images.

In previous years the prize was awarded to such graphic artists and writers as Róbert Odegnál, Imre Fekete, Marabu, Brazil, Richárd Vass and Dávid Cserkuti. The latter graphic artist was invited by the festival organising committee to design the poster for this year’s event, which intends to follow the French example of the Angouleme Comics Festival. Although the number of candidates for the “comic book” category increases each year, this is undoubtedly still the smallest group, as few are lucky enough to have their more long-winded comics taken up by a publisher. This year the jury selected the work entitled “Twin Hunt”, an episode introducing the album Gemini Report, which is based on Antal Bayer’s screenplay adaptation of an unpublished novel by Péter Korcsmáros. The volume is illustrated by Attila Fazekas. Second place was given to Mihály Vass with his work, “Tinglitango”, and third place was awarded to Imre Fekete for his work “Just an ordinary Monday” which appeared in Kretén magazine.

As considerably more entries were submitted for the title of “the best comic short story of 2007”, following a pre-selection process, the jury convened for a number of voting rounds. First prize was awarded to Tamás Gáspár and Jenő Szabó for “Parliament Overtime”, which was originally done for a billboard exhibition on 23 October and then also featured in the fourth issue of Pinkhell. The other two award winners also became members of the Hungarian Comics Academy: Miklós Felvidéki’s “Noname” and Zoltán Fritz’s “The Compass of Death” whose screenplay was written by Zorro de Bianco after Jorge Luis Borges. Fourth place was given to one of the newly discovered talents of the year, Nóra Vincze, who won second prize with her work entitled “A Sad Monster’s Story”. There was a similarly large pool of entries for the “comic minute” category. Péter Kovács was given the 2007 Alfabéta prize for his single-page work “On the Fifth Day”, which appeared in a special issue of Panel. This time around, Imre Fekete walked away with the silver medal for his Kovács Pistike film parodies featured in Kretén. Third place was given to Róbert Vass and Tamás Kemenes for their comics entitled “’Sztív’, Who Is So Mean It’s Almost Unbearable”, which first appeared in Panel zine, and then, in a larger number of copies (an in colour) in Kretén. The Dodos who clearly dominated the first two Alfabéta competitions were swept aside by certain wire-perching birds. In 2007, the title of “best comic strip” was awarded to Péter Haragos for “Strip”, outrivaling in a noble fight Marabu’s strange little animals. Tamás Pásztor won third place for “Tomstere”.

We planned to expand the Alfabéta Awards with a new category for the best cover page of the year. However, as after three voting rounds we still had five leading works in a virtual tie, the jury decided to acknowledge the excellence of these works by handing out certificates. The winners are Barnabás Ábrai (Panel, issue no.5), Miklós Felvidéki (Pinkhell, issue no.4), Tamás Gáspár (Pinkhell issue no.3) and Zorro de Bianco (Eduárd issue no.9 and Papírmozi issue no.3).