24th Special Achievement Award

SAKATA Fumihiko

Representative of Gataket Secretariat


Born in Niigata Prefecture, 1963. He graduated from Niigata Prefectural Niigata High School. In 1983, he was involved in the founding of GATAKET, a dojinshi (fanzine) marketplace, and became its representative in 1989, remaining involved in its operation for many years. He is one of the pioneers in establishing a dojinshi marketplace in regional cities as a regular business. In 1991, he launched COMITIA in Niigata (now Niigata COMITIA), the first local version of the COMITIA, which is an original dojinshi exhibition and marketplace. He is also a founder of the Japan Doujinshi Marketplace Network. In 1998, he became the Vice Chairman of the Niigata Manga Competition, a manga culture project of the City, and in 2010, he was involved in the launch of the Niigata Festival. When the city opened the Niigata Manga Animation Museum and the Niigata City Manga House in 2013, he was designated to operate the facilities together with the Kokusai Sogo Gakuen (International General School), an operator of vocational schools in Niigata City, and served as the Director. Taking advantage of his experience in exhibitions of original manga drawings at GATAKET and his background as an animator, he has been involved in the direction of many original art exhibitions and events during his tenure, including comprehensive direction of the Haikyu!! Animation Original Art Exhibition in Niigata, and the HAGIO Moto SF Exhibition in Niigata and other places, as well as art direction for the MAYA Mineo Original
Art Exhibition.

Reason for Award

Local cultural communities play a crucial role in cultivating the creativity of individual manga artists and providing a place for presentation, although it is hardly recognizable since publishers are concentrated in the metropolitan area. Niigata is an advanced city in terms of cultural promotion of manga, and has focused on nurturing manga artists. Its city-wide efforts include dedicated educational institutions and exhibition facilities, public manga contests, and dojinshi markets. SAKATA has striven for many years to provide a nodal point to organically connect various businesses, while running his main business, the GATAKET and Niigata COMITIA dojinshi marketplaces. I would like to congratulate him on his achievement in supporting the rich diversity of Japanese manga. (OMOTE Tomoyuki)