Macedonia’s first annual comics awards, Lift, will be presented at an exhibition at MKC, the Youth Cultural Center, on Friday at 8 pm.

The Skopje publishing house Templum and the civic association OXO founded the awards to recognize local comics artists and promote comics, “a medium largely neglected in Macedonia,” according to the organizers.

Thirty entries were submitted to the 2018 comics contest held by Templum.

The best nine were published in a special edition that will be launched at Friday’s exhibition.

The finalists were chosen by a panel of judges including visual artist Jana Jakimovska, graphic designer Lasko Dzhuroski, comics expert Vladimir Bitoljanu and Nikola Gelevski, publisher and editor-in-chief of Templum.

The comics artists who made the final shortlist are: Nikola Panov; Stefan Nikolovski; Oliver Cvetkovski, Lazar Angelov; Viktor Gavriloski and Magdalena Mircheska; Jovana Velinova; Kristina Nedelkovska; Marina Nikolaevska, and Vladimir Trajanovski.

Three of them will receive prizes amounting to EUR 300, 200, and 100.

The Lift awards were named after the eponymous Macedonian comics journal published between 1996 and 2001.

The inaugural Lift comics awards were financed by the City of Skopje.