Winners of the Libex 2022 competition

Jitet Kustana (Indonesia) has won the 4th edition of the Libex competition, organized by Librexpression, a center for international cartoons and freedom of speech. Cristina Sampaio (Portugal) received second prize and Niels Bo Bojesen (Denmark) third prize. You can see the winning cartoons below.

The competition’s theme was Towards the end of humanity? Since the beginning of the industrial revolution and especially since its globalization, humanity has had to face multiple challenges. Inequality, violated rights, demography, migration, poverty, pandemics, wars, power struggles and national and international hegemonies, dictatorships, fanaticism, disinformation, ignorance, are all open issues that can produce global upheavals in a short time and change the course of human history. This state of affairs jeopardizes the survival, if not of humanity, at least of our societies and the cohesion of the European Union.


Jitet KUSTANA (Indonesia)-%22affondando nelle vittime%22First prize - Jitet Kustana


Cristina SAMPAIO (Portogallo)-%22Guerra%22Second prize - Cristina Sampaio


Niels BO BOJESEN (Danimarca)-%22Estinzione%22Third prize - Niels Bo Bojesen

281 cartoonists from 63 countries submitted 490 works to the jury. The jury was composed of Fabio Magnasciutti (Italian cartoonist), Marilena Nardi (Italian cartoonist), Tom Janssen (Dutch cartoonist), KAP (Jaume Capdevilla, Catalan cartoonist), Raffaella Spinazzi (Italian blogger) and chaired by Thierry Vissol (director of Libex). On the basis of four criteria: technique, originality, relevance and irony, the jury selected 55 works by artists from 30 countries, the 10 finalists and the 3 winners.

The exhibition of the 55 semi-finalist cartoons will be open to the public until 31 December, in the cloister of the San Benedetto monastery in Conversano, Italy.

Laughing Matters? Humor and Free Speech in the Digital Age

If you are interested in our project Cartoons in Court, we recommend you join the online event Laughing Matters? on October 14, from 10.15am to 5.15pm ET (New York). The event is co-sponsored by Temple Law School, the University of Groningen and the Dutch Research Council (NWO).

Negotiating the legal boundaries of free speech is a crucial challenge for democracy—especially so in the digital age, as potentially harmful material can easily gain pervasive circulation (Brison and Gelber 2019). Humor is a particularly demanding testing ground in this respect; while the right to humorous expression is vital to democratic societies, jokes can sometimes become a vehicle for unlawful speech, such as defamation or incitement to violence. This problem is further amplified today by the growing fragmentation of ‘irony-laden internet subcultures,’ where the difference between e.g. racist humor and satire of racism often becomes imperceptible (Nagle 2017).


Hate_speeching__glen_le_lievre copyCartoon by Glen Le Lievre

Despite the urgency of these issues, the approach to humor in free speech jurisprudence is still notably inconsistent—not only across different contexts, but also within the same given judicial system. In his analysis of satire-related case law from the United States, for example, legal scholar Jeff Todd lamented the lack of ‘an adequate terminology that is grounded in theory,’ which complicates the task of ‘clarify[ing] and rationaliz[ing] the different outcomes’ reached in court (Todd 2016; see also Little 2019). Other studies have highlighted a similar degree of inconsistency in humor jurisprudence from the European Court of Human Rights (Godioli and Little 2022; Alkiviadou 2022) and Brazil (Capelotti 2015).

In order to tackle these challenges, interdisciplinary collaboration between practicing lawyers, legal scholars and humanities-oriented humor researchers takes on heightened importance. Also crucial are comparative endeavors mapping the juridical handling of humor across different regions. Aiming to set a foundation for further collaboration in both directions, this symposium will feature a series of short presentations on current issues and ongoing projects, followed by an open Q&A at the end of each panel.

Check out full program and speakers, and register as a guest here.



Cuban cartoonist Carlos David Fuentes is the winner of the European Cartoon Award 2022

Carlos David Fuentes - Courrier International The winning cartoon, by David Carlos Fuentes

The European Press Prize and Studio Europa Maastricht, founders of the European Cartoon Award, proudly announce the name of the winner and runners-up of this year’s edition of the contest. The first prize was awarded to the Cuban cartoonist Carlos David Fuentes, for his work Putin in Ukraine published in the French magazine Courrier International (with first publication on Cartoon Movement). The two runners-up are cartoonists Marilena Nardi (Italy) and Harry Burton (Ireland). Honourable mentions were awarded to Jean-Michel Delambre (France) and Vasco Gargalo (Portugal).

The works of the winner and runners-up were selected from over 400 submissions, coming from 29 countries, European, and beyond, by a jury composed of award-winning cartoonists, previous year’s nominees, activists, and experts.

Janet Anderson, chair of the Panel of Judges: 'The jury was impressed by the powerful storytelling and striking imagery of many of the submitted cartoons. Tom Janssen rightfully said that Carlos David Fuentes' cartoon is the right image to portray this difficult year; it has a very dramatic impact, and it is very strong. Harry Burton's cartoon on abortion rights tackles a very big issue with wit, and in a clearly recognisable image. Lastly, it might seem the issue of Afghanistan slipped off the world’s agenda, but the underlying issues are still huge, and Marilena Nardi’s cartoon tells that story in a simple but very effective way.'

The cartoons of the two runners-up, Marilena Nardi (published in the Italian newspaper ‘Domani’) and Harry Burton (published in the Irish outlet ‘Irish Examiner’):

Marilena Nardi - Domani.jpg

Harry Burton- Irish Examiner

The jury decided to award two honourable mentions as well, to Vasco Gargalo and to Jean-Michel Delambre:

Vasco Gargalo - Sábado

Jean-Michel Delambre - Le Canard enchaîné

Again Janet Anderson, chair of the Panel of Judges: 'Jean-Michel Delambre’s cartoon treats the subject of the Ukraine invasion in a humorous way, all the while driving home a point, and a very important one. Vasco Gargalo’s lollipop cartoon is about an issue that is still affecting much of the world, and for its shocking reminder, the jury decided to award it with a special mention.'

The jury of the European Cartoon Award 2022 was composed of: Tom Janssen (2021 winner), Janet Anderson, Catherine André, Jen Sorensen, and Niels Bo Bojesen. And, for the first round of selection, a jury composed of four previous year’s nominees joined the voting: Osama Hajjaj, Saeed Sadeghi, Konstantinos Tsanakas, and Vitor Neves.

After 2 rounds of evaluation, the two juries identified a batch of 16 cartoons that qualified for the final selection. Here is the list of the 16 nominees the cartoons belong to: Toso Borković (Serbia), Dave Brown (UK), Harry Burton (Ireland), Hajo de Reijger (Netherlands), Jean-Michel Delambre (France), Carlos David Fuentes (Cuba), Vasco Gargalo (Portugal), Emad Hajjaj (Jordan), Silvano Mello (Brazil), Marilena Nardi (Italy), Pierre Pauma (France), Tjeerd Royaards (Netherlands), Gatis Šļūka (Latvia), Matías Tejeda (Argentina), Mahnaz Yazdani (Iran), Nahid Zamani (Iran).

Emanuele Del Rosso, Head of Communications at the European Press Prize and organiser of the ECA 2022: 'The incredible power of editorial cartoons is clear when we look at the sixteen works shortlisted for the final stage of the ECA, and even more, at the winners of this year’s Award. These are works that tell us a whole story in a single image. They convey multiple meanings, they make us think, and help us interpret a cultural and political reality that is harder and harder to understand.'