Press release

Success for University Graduates at John Byrne Awards

Published on 17 March 2020

Two University of Dundee graduates have scooped top prize in a prestigious online competition.

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Abriele Skaite and Thanos Kyratzis triumphed over thousands of other entrants for this year’s John Byrne Award, which aims to create Scotland’s most inclusive, creative arts platform.

Abriele, a former Comics MDes student at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design and Thanos, from the University’s Comics MLitt course, received prize money of £7,500 for their collaboration, ‘Borders’. Their comic explores the differing views and experiences of refugees and migrants as well as the concept and practical impact of national borders on both a personal and social level.

The pair used their own experience as migrants alongside interviews with others to take readers on a compelling journey that shares opinions from around the globe.

Writer Thanos said, “We made this book for the people who had something to say on the issue and the most incredible thing is seeing it grow in the hearts and minds of everyone who supports it.

“Winning the John Byrne Award is a huge step in our career journey.

“It's arduous, trying to figure if you're doing the right thing and if you're going anywhere with what you're doing.  Winning this means that we're definitely striding forward, even if we don't know where that road is taking us.”

The success has been praised by the former students’ programme leaders, Phillip Vaughan and Professor Chris Murray.

Professor Murray said, “This win highlights the importance of collaboration in comics and the coming together of creative people and ideas,

“The ‘Borders’ project also indicates the power of word and image, when they come together as a communication tool to impact complex information to the public.”


Jessica Rorke

Media Relations Officer

+44 (0)1382 388878
Story category Awards and accolades