The first comics contest about the Balkans in history has named its winners!

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The international competition of historical comics “CAN for BALKANS” took place between March and July 2022.

27 authors from Belgium, Bulgaria, North Macedonia, Romania, Serbia, Ukraine and China entered the final of the competition.

All selected comics were created especially for this contest. In addition to the artistic quality and historical documentation, other important criteria for judging were the originality and the way in which the theme was respected, especially the choice of topics with messages of reconciliation, peace and trust building, tolerance and respect.

The international jury was formed by prof. Adrian Cioroianu (Romania), historian, diplomat, author of comics scenarios and university professor, prof. Ardian Isufi (Albania), artist, Dean of the Faculty of Fine Arts at University of Arts Tirana (2016-2020), Etienne Schréder (Belgium), well-known scriptwriter and comics author, Drazen Kovacevic, one of the most important comics artists in Serbia and Tome Trajkov, comics promoter from North Macedonia.

Both, the award-winning works and those accepted by the jury in the finals (141 boards in total) will be presented for the first time at the Brașov International Historical Comics Festival, starting from October 13, 2022, as part of the final exhibition of the European project. The exhibition will then tour this year to Tirana (November) and Brussels (December) and next year to Leskovac (February) and Veles (March).


The Grand prize of the first edition of the “CAN for BALKANS” contest was won by Răzvan Bronescu from Romania with the work “Aurel Petrescu, the Pioneer of Romanian Animation”.

The First prize went to the Romanian artist Ionuț Popescu with the work “Balkans Forever”. The podium is completed by artists from Serbia. Kosta Milovanović won the 2nd prize with “And The Three Friends Are…”, a comic strip inspired by his own life, from the beginning of the civil war (1991), which caught him in the Yugoslavian navy. The 3rd prize was awarded to the comic strip “The Wind”, created by Marjan Milanov (screenplay) and Srdan Todorović (drawings), with a subject inspired by the tragedies of the battles on the Serbian-Bulgarian border in the winter of 1915.

The international jury also awarded five special mentions: Aljoša Tomić and Dragan Stokić Rajački (Serbia) for the work “Deda Roga”; Maximilien Van de Wiele (Belgium) for the work “Tuzla”; Slavica Kupenkova (North Macedonia) for the work “Odyssey”; Valentin Ionescu with the work “Comrade Rakija” and Vlad Forsea with the work “Balkan Humor vs The World” share the mention award dedicated to Romania.


The “CAN for BALKANS – Comics Alliance Networking for Balkans” project is one of the 13 winning projects of the call Strengthening cultural cooperation with and competiveness of cultural and creative industries in the Western Balkans (EACEA 39/2019) , within the Creative Europe Funding Program and is implemented by the Brașov County History Museum (project leader), the National Historical Museum of Albania, Comics Art Museum Brussels – Belgian Comic Strip Center, Comic Center of Macedonia (North Macedonia), Leskovac school of comic ”Nikola Mitrovic Kokan” (Serbia).


The project is financed by the European Commission through the European Education and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA) in Brussels and has an implementation period between March 2021 and March 2023.

For more details about the project and the activities carried out so far, especially the studies of the scientific research project, we invite you to access


About the projects of the call Strengthening cultural cooperation with and competiveness of cultural and creative industries in the Western Balkans (EACEA 39/2019) visit