Elías Querejeta Zine Eskola will open its doors to its first intake of students on September 19
The 45 places on offer for the 2018-2019 academic year were filled after a selection process involving 113 candidates from around the world.
On May 31, Elías Querejeta Zine Eskola concluded the registration process for the 2018-2019 academic year, for which it received a total of 113 applications from the beginning of January for its three postgraduate courses: 34 candidates from the Basque Autonomous Community (2 from Alava, 10 from Bizkaia and 22 from Gipuzkoa), 36 from the rest of Spain and 43 from foreign countries. Much of the latter group of applications came from Latin American countries but applications were also received from North America, Asia and European countries.
After the Academic Board (made up of representatives from the Basque Film Archive, Tabakalera, San Sebastian Film Festival and EQZE) evaluated the documentation received and carried out personal interviews during the two admission periods, all 45 places, 15 for each speciality offered by the centre, were filled for its first year.
The students are made up of 60% women (27) and 40% men (18). 10 come from the Basque Autonomous Community (9 form Gipuzkoa), 17 from the rest of Spain and 18 from abroad (11 from Latin America). The nationality of the foreign students is very varied: EQZE will have students from Andorra, Argentina, Colombia, Ecuador, United States, Mexico, United Kingdom, Serbia, Thailand, Ukraine and Venezuela. The average age is 29.1 years old.
As far as their profiles are concerned, we will have graduates in Cinema, Audiovisual Communication, Fine Arts, History of Art and Restoration and Conservation with interesting careers behind them: some have had works premièred at festivals or exhibited in galleries; others have experience in audiovisual curating or producing, running and programming cultural events and festivals; there are researchers who have been dedicated to different fields of creation and study, multidisciplinary creators, professionals in the film industry...
EQZE will open the doors to its first promotion on September 19, to welcome and receive its students. Two days later, the 66th edition of the San Sebastian Film Festival will begin, in which students will have a specific agenda through which they will be able to attend screenings, master classes, the International Meeting of Film Students and other activities, in addition to getting to know the inside workings of the festival. Once the festival has finished, on October 2 they will begin a journey of 56 weeks of teaching activities which, completing the circle, will end around the next edition of the Festival, making it a termination point for students in the first year (who will still have time to finish off their personal projects), while being a launch point for the school’s new students.
2018-2019 Academic Year
The school, which was created by the Provincial Council of Gipuzkoa, has a unique educational project, consisting of three specialities (Archiving, Curating and Creating) that take shape from the knowledge fields of the three institutions involved in their conceptualisation: the Basque Film Archive, the San Sebastian Film Festival and the Tabakalera International Contemporary Culture Centre. The planning of each itinerary is divided into three areas that combine reflection, the experience of cinematic production, direct contact with the professional world and experimental practice. The course lasts 56 weeks divided into six modules of between five and six weeks. Each module has its own pedagogical coherence, meaning that all subjects and activities in that period revolve around a central theme in each speciality.
The purpose of this approach and its three pathways is that students acquire the broadest and most cross-cutting view, which allows them to discuss the three ages of cinema: the past (research and preservation), present (curating and programming) and future (creation). The people responsible for each speciality, respectively, will be Clara Sánchez-Dehesa, a specialist in conservation and restoration of film and audiovisual material, with a degree from the Jeffrey L. Selznick School of Film Preservation and in audiovisual heritage through a Master’s degree from the UCM, María Palacios Cruz, a curator, writer and lecturer on cinema and moving image, former director of the Courtisane Festival in Belgium and currently deputy director of LUX (based in London), an organisation dedicated to promoting artistic practices around moving image and Laida Lertxundi, a lecturer in Fine Arts and Humanities at the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena (California), with a Master’s degree in Fine Arts from the California Institute of the Arts and author of works that have been projected at museums, festivals and galleries around the world.
The faculty is made up of cinema professionals with a proven reputation in the three areas of specialisation and a marked international profile. Leire Apellaniz, Peio Aguirre, Carlo Chatrian, Samuel M. Delgado, Carolina Figueroa, Thierry Frémaux, Helena Girón, Gema Grueso, Mikel Gurrea, Oliver Laxe, Luis Macías, Natalia Marín, Ana Pfaff, Matías Piñeiro, José Luis Sanz, Esther Urlus, Vincent Maraval and Santos Zunzunegui are the latest people to join an expanding project, on which those that were already working include, among others, Koldo Almandoz, Cristina Álvarez, Manuel Asín, Erika Balsom, Luciano Berriatúa, Harkaitz Cano, Esperanza Collado, Xabier Erkizia, Vanesa Fernández Guerra, Beatrice Gibson, Dan Kidner, Reto Kromer, Salome Lamas, Anna Manubens, Takashi Makino, Adrian Martin, Ricardo Matos, Maider Oleaga, Garbiñe Ortega, Filipa Ramos, Kara van Malssen and Paulino Viota. The teaching project will also feature professionals from the Basque Film Archive, Tabakalera and the San Sebastian Film Festival, which will have a specific subject dedicated to it in the academic programme in which the preparation process for the Festival and the selection criteria for its programme will be shared with the students.
An intense first year of activity
In addition to monitoring the work to refurbish the space, organising the first academic year and developing the research programme, during its first year of activity Elías Querejeta Zine Eskola has started to deploy its public programme. In October, the international seminar “Stories (Aesthetics and Politics) About Anonymous Cinema and Orphan Films” and its complement, the "Anonymous Cinema" audiovisual exhibition, opened the school doors to filmmakers, researchers, scholars and film lovers. Later there were two seminars (in December and May) dedicated to the research and dissemination project, “The Lost Lessons of Andrei Tarkovsky”, and a lecture by the American historian P. Adams Sitney (March) entitled "Half A Century Showing Avant-Garde Cinema” organised in conjunction with the Festival Punto de Vista and the Reina Sofia Museum. Moreover, EQZE has worked closely with the Basque Film Archive, the Tabakalera Film and Audiovisual Department and the San Sebastian International Film Festival in activities such as the series dedicated to Lucrecia Martel (who visited San Sebastián to talk about her work), the Universidad del Cine in Argentina and the films of Andréi Tarkovski films. The school was also involved in the long-awaited DVD edition of the film Historias Extraordinarias (Extraordinary Stories) (Argentina, 2008) by Mariano Llinás, together with Caimán Cuadernos de Cine, the IBAFF International Film Festival in Murcia, the OUFF International Film Festival in Ourense and Tabakalera.
Beyond programming, Elías Querejeta Zine Eskola has become a partner in the Ikusmira Berriak residency programme organised by Tabakalera and the San Sebastian International Film Festival. Its recent incorporation has made it possible to expand the number of proposals selected from four to five. Another project which the school has launched is Zinema (h)abian - Cinema en curs, a film education project created by the cultural association A Bao A Qu, which has been running in schools and institutes since the 2005-2006 academic year, with the aim of bringing filmmaking closer to the classroom. With the collaboration of Tabakalera during the 2017/18 academic year, Zinema (h)abian - Cinema en curs was based at the Instituto Oriarte in Lasarte where 22 first year secondary school students took part in the experience.
Finally, EQZE worked in collaboration with the Dock Of The Bay Music Documentary Film Festival in San Sebastian and, more recently, provided support to the (H)emen-Here collective by lending its facilities to organise two seminars..