2020 Hugo Awards

2020 Hugo Design by John Flower

CoNZealand presented the 2020 Hugo Awards in an online ceremony today.

Full voting statistics are here.

Deputy Hugo Administrator Nicholas Whyte’s analysis is here.

2020 Hugo Awards

Best Novel

  • A Memory Called Empire by Arkady Martine (Tor; Tor UK)

Best Novella

  • This Is How You Lose the Time War by Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone (Saga Press; Jo Fletcher Books)

Best Novelette

  • Emergency Skin by N.K. Jemisin ( Forward Collection (Amazon))

Best Short Story

  • “As the Last I May Know”,by S.L. Huang (Tor.com, 23 October 2019)

Best Series

  • The Expanse by James S. A. Corey (Orbit US; Orbit UK)

Best Related Work

  • “2019 John W. Campbell Award Acceptance Speech”, by Jeannette Ng

Best Graphic Story or Comic

  • LaGuardia, written by Nnedi Okorafor, art by Tana Ford, colours by James Devlin (Berger Books; Dark Horse)

Best Dramatic Presentation, Long Form

  • Good Omens, written by Neil Gaiman, directed by Douglas Mackinnon (Amazon Studios/BBC Studios/Narrativia/The Blank Corporation)

Best Dramatic Presentation, Short Form

  • The Good Place: “The Answer”, written by Daniel Schofield, directed by Valeria Migliassi Collins (Fremulon/3 Arts Entertainment/Universal Television)

Best Editor, Short Form

  • Ellen Datlow

Best Editor, Long Form

  • Navah Wolfe

Best Professional Artist

  • John Picacio

Best Semiprozine

  • Uncanny Magazine, editors-in-chief Lynne M. Thomas and Michael Damian Thomas, nonfiction/managing editor Michi Trota, managing editor Chimedum Ohaegbu, podcast producers Erika Ensign and Steven Schapansky

Best Fanzine

  • The Book Smugglers, editors Ana Grilo and Thea James

Best Fancast

  • Our Opinions Are Correct, presented by Annalee Newitz and Charlie Jane Anders

Best Fan Writer

  • Bogi Takács

Best Fan Artist

  • Elise Matthesen

Lodestar Award for Best Young Adult Book (not a Hugo)

  • Catfishing on CatNet by Naomi Kritzer (Tor Teen)

Astounding Award for Best New Writer, sponsored by Dell Magazines (not a Hugo)

  • R.F. Kuang (2nd year of eligibility)

Photos of the winners follow the jump.

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CoNZealand Hugo Bases Revealed

James Brown’s design for the 1945 Retro Hugo base, and John Flower’s design for the 2020 Hugo Award base were shown to the public for the first time during CoNZealand’s virtual Opening Ceremonies on July 28.

Retro Hugos

James Brown described for the audience the thinking behind his design.

Now in keeping with the theme of exploration, my design is based on the prow of a waka, or traditional canoe of the M?ori people, the amazingly skilled navigators and explorers who were the first to discover and settle Aotearoa New Zealand. The motifs on the side are inspired by whakairo, the traditional M?ori art of wood carving. In the spirit of the Retro Hugos, I think it’s ideal that the award itself can give a sense of being an artifact from the year that it honours. Design-wise, the mid-1940s were a really interesting time in between the sleek modernism of art deco and the futurism of the 1950s. A lot of creative use was being made of new polymers and plastics. So I chose to cast the base in a polyurethane resin with a marbled effect, reminiscent of art deco bakelite radios, and I’ve given the lettering an imitation mother of pearl effect with an iridescent, translucent resin. The design of the lettering was inspired by the typography of golden age sci-fi magazine covers.

This was an immensely fun project for me to work on. I got to use all sorts of techniques which were new to me, like computer aided design and 3D printing, and my background as a sculptor is in the miniature war-gaming industry so this is by far the largest thing I’ve ever sculpted and cast. It’s been quite a long project, quite a long process, especially with the unexpected demands of the COVID-19 lockdown, but fortunately my wife has been very understanding and hasn’t minded me turning our relatively small apartment into my workshop.

2020 Hugos

John Flower, from Palmerston North, New Zealand, says he created a base out of black glass, with a bunch of gold hands designed onto it:

They were used by early explorers, the M?ori who came to New Zealand, to navigate through the Pacific. The idea is that, depending on how many fingers you hold up, you can measure the angle between a set of stars and the horizon, and work out where you are. For example, if you have the Southern Cross—which is made up of four stars—you can measure the distance between the top star and the bottom star, and if you rotate your hand like that so it’s, say, three fingers distance down to the horizon, then you know that you have due South when you’re in the Southern Hemisphere.

So each of these gold hands is a different number of degrees, and the constellations within there are known in New Zealand as Matariki. In other places they’re known as the Pleiades, or Subaru in Japan. They’re a group of stars that show up in New Zealand somewhere between May and June. In New Zealand, they’re recognised as the beginning of the New Year. We did all the design work using open source software, like Blender and Inkscape, which are free to use. So here we have a sheet of P?ua. P?ua is a mollusc found off the shores of New Zealand. They’ve taken the shell of it and flattened it out. We have used a laser to cut a spiral design in it. The spiral design combines the Milky Way with the pattern of endemic ferns of New Zealand. So we’ve cut it out from here, and if we move the sheet we can see what we’ve created. So that’s cut out from the middle, and the idea is that on top of this P?ua we will seat a timber design on top like so, and the rocket will go in the middle like that.

Kiwi Artists Design
Hugo Award Bases

CoNZealand, 78th Worldcon host, announced two New Zealand artists selected to create the bases for the 2020 Hugo Awards and the 1945 Retro Hugos.

CoNZealand invited New Zealand-based artists to submit a base design. Five designers submitted excellent proposals, and two were selected to produce a base for the awards.

The 2020 Hugo Award base has been designed by John Flower.

John has been working as an engraver for Trophy Specialists & Engraving in Palmerston North for the past 16 years. He has been a fan of science fiction since he was a wee lad when his father would tell him about the goings on in books by Asimov, Heinlein, and others and is chuffed to be part of recognising the talented people creating science fiction works today. 

“The trophy base was designed using open source software and hopefully it captures the sense of wonder of the sci-fi genre and the spirit of cooperation that is required to explore beyond the Earth,” said Flower.

The 1945 Retro Hugo Awards base has been designed by James Brown.

Born in Christchurch but a long time resident of Auckland, James studied graphic design and illustration at Auckland University of Technology. He spent a decade working as a miniature painter and sculptor for a tabletop wargaming company, a role which allowed him to combine his love of tiny things with his interests in history and gaming. He also had a brief but very enjoyable stint painting film props at Weta Workshop.

“As a lifelong science fiction fan I attended different NatCons [New Zealand national conventions], but this year will be my first time participating in a Worldcon,” Brown said.

The Hugo Awards are a major highlight of every Worldcon, recognizing the best science fiction or fantasy works and achievements from the previous year. Each award features a metal rocket as the central element but the base design changes every year.

[From a press release.]