Vietnamese comic artist wins silver at Int'l Manga Awards

Nachi Nguyen, a Vietnamese manga (Japanese comic) lover and comic artist, has won the silver prize at the Japan International Manga Awards with her work “Dieu nhay cua vu tru” (The Dancing Universe).
Vietnamese comic artist Nachi Nguyen. (Photo courtesy of Nachi Nguyen)
Vietnamese comic artist Nachi Nguyen. (Photo courtesy of Nachi Nguyen)

Nachi’s work stood out from 587 other artists from around the world even though it was just a one-shot (a comical work composed of a single standalone chapter).

The story was deeply inspired by Nachi’s enthusiasm for astronomy, and it revolves around the daily life of celestial bodies such as the Sun, the Earth, the Moon, Venus, Saturn, and Jupiter and their coordinated efforts to protect and make life on Earth sustainable.

“I enjoy learning about astronomy, but I am not really good at math, so my dream of working for NASA is nearly impossible. Hence, I think of a way to tell stories about this topic using my perspective and imagination," she said.

Through meticulous illustrations and the humanisation of planets and stars in the universe, Nachi hoped to bring astronomy closer to people in a much simpler way.

There will be three chapters in the series, and the first will be released next year.

“I genuinely do not expect much in my work, so I am beyond happy and honoured having received this award,” she told Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper.

The Japan International Manga Award, started in 2007, is held annually by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan to honour maga artists around the world who contribute to the development of manga culture.

It is among the most prestigious international comic awards since all works are meticulously selected by the MoFA and renowned manga artists such as Machiko Satonaka.

Including Nachi’s award, Vietnam has won a total of five prizes, with a bronze for Dat Rong (Dragon Land) in 2012, a silver for Long Than Tuong (Holy Dragon Imperator) in 2015 and Dia Nguc Mon (Gateway to Underworld) in 2016, and a bronze for Bam thay Tuong, co thay Vu de tim! (Rain in a Moon Night) in 2022.

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