Elías Querejeta Zine Eskola is a project school and in each one of them a prefiguration of cinema: a hypothesis
The term, cinema hypothesis, refers to various pedagogical projects based on imagining the cinema of the future. We must specifically refer to the Ipotesi Cinema school founded by Ermanno Olmi and Paolo Valmarana in 1982 in Bassano del Grappa (Italy) and the book, L’Hypothèse cinéma: Petit traité de transmission du cinéma à l’école et ailleurs, by Alain Bergala published in 2002. As a tribute to these two great initiatives, at this School we refer to the pieces of work produced by students, that in themselves are a projection of cinema towards the future, as hypotheses. Students in all specialities must complete a Project or final piece of work during their time at the School. The organisation of the academic calendar into modules, with periods of personal work, is designed so that all the subjects revolve around the personal journey that students have embarked on, expanding its criteria and testing their own ideas.
The figure of the tutor is vital in this type of guidance methodology. In the final analysis, this is all about encouraging a type of relationship based on trust and mutual dialogue, to ensure that this guide is also a path towards creative and professional maturity. Allocating a tutor meets two criteria: it must match the Project and the affinities of each student. In the case of projects that have originated with a tutor, the latter forms a working team with students in order to complete the project.
This concept identifies the event or series of final events in which students precisely exhibit or publicly display their cinema hypotheses; that is, the work they have done throughout the school year: these may be films they have imagined and completed, but may also be utopian creative projects, an imagined impossible kind of cinema, fragments of a film that they have already started shooting or plans for archival work or film archaeology.
As far as turning this into a practical reality is concerned, they may adopt a variety of approaches, depending on the type of Project, either as an ordered presentation in a particular space, such as on open days at the school or as another kind of event. The content of this exhibited work must revolve around imagined cinema: films that they want to make and that perhaps still only exist as first drafts, films that can just about be made out, but cannot be made, utopian visions of a future cinema, cinematic discoveries and finds, research proposals, fragmentary materials, graphic designs, installations, panels… and of course, all the work that they have finished over the course. If the school thinks about cinema, this event is just the way to prolong and make film hypotheses visible. Defining and coordinating the event is the responsibility of students in the Curating speciality.
An important component of film hypothesis is the book-catalogue that is prepared each year based on various contributions and students’ projects. Published annually, the catalogue-guide will include various proposals by students and collaborations by teachers and guests that have passed through the course.