19th Manga Division Excellence Award
HO Tingfung [Portugal]
Somewhere in Taipei, there is a rumor about a “Non-working City”. That is a city without work, without competition, is a self-sufficient paradise. Fixed quota can get into the city each month, but no one can tell the exact entry place. A couple of lovers, overwhelmed by the mortgage, enter the “Non-working City” unexpectedly. They notice exercise machines that can convert kinetics to usable resources, and realize firstly that working is not the only surviving method. The scenery of “Non-working City” extends from Taipei to the virtual city, borrowing the description method from The Peach Colony, attempting to exile from the city machine, highlighting the unequal distribution of resources and power of contemporary social relations.
Reason for Award
This work captured our attention for being a unique piece with endearing style. Though there was an opinion from some jurors that the “drawing technique was not good enough”, the ineffable power engendered by an unbridled style fascinated several other jury members. Surviving a tempest selection process, this work overcame a number of well-made pieces to receive this award. It is a joy to look at its chaotic cityscape somewhere in Asia, ever growing limitlessly, captured by a boldly detailed and unpretentious style. We are reminded of an exclusive senior community, akin to American Sun City, where nobody is required to neither work nor compete. Through this work, we are asked to rethink if those conditions can lead to a fulfilling life. Also, readers cannot ignore the real yet paradoxical existence of a paradise on earth, especially in the contemporary cities sustained by competition and labor. (FURUNAGA Shinichi)