The school of the
three tenses of cinema
EQZE is not a school for film students; it is a school for filmmakers who want to study, who want to continue learning and researching, who want to keep on being amazed
The academic programme reflects an educational model that does not focus exclusively on acquiring skills and competencies but is instead intended to be both comprehensive and holistic. It does not separate life from film; it stands against the supposed neutrality of technology; it sees itself as forming part of a humanistic tradition and it aspires to create a space that stimulates critical thinking.
EQZE is a space for free, emancipatory, egalitarian and safe learning, a territory that nourishes and protects exploration and research, individual growth and social construction, starting with the school community itself.
The school’s academic project gives shape to this philosophy in the form of three postgraduate programmes: Film Preservation, Film Curating and Filmmaking. Three postgraduate courses that together identify and define a single view of cinema that links the past, present and future.
Three postgraduate programmes: Film Preservation, Film Curating and Filmmaking
The purpose of EQZE is to train filmmakers in the broad, cross-cutting sense of the term; filmmakers that can actively confront and interact with the cinema of the past (through research and preservation), with the cinema of the present (through curating and programming) and with the cinema of the future (through creation) developing a comprehensive unitary vision.
The Film Preservation Studies specialty seeks to train specialists in the identification, classification, restoration and preservation of cinematographic and audiovisual heritage, while at the same time it proposes this same territory as a field for artistic creation.
Film Curating Studies area aims to provide training in the conceptualisation, development, management and dissemination of all kinds of programmes in which cinema and the audio-visual arts play the leading role.
Finally, The Filmmaking Studies speciality focuses on the theoretical and methodological training, as well as practical research, of anyone interested in making films or artistic audio-visual work.
Elías Querejeta Zine Eskola offers a rich, ever-changing range of academic possibilities that enable each student to create their own, highly personal and individual learning pathway.
Each course thus comprises an unchartered territory that students must individually map and traverse through their own decisions. The territory is made up of a broad system of cross-cutting subjects, research projects, the students' own time bank, trips and outings, student initiatives and projects organised by institutions supporting the project.
In addition to the activities organised by different agents, EQZE itself is designed as a workshop school, open to both interpersonal and solo learning and the formation of learning communities. In this way, EQZE fosters the ideal of a school that is different each year and for each individual student.
The contents included in the academic programme basically fall into the following subject categories:
01. Core subjects:
Core subjects aim to provide students with an opportunity for considered, shared reflection on key issues linked to the three tenses of film. Core subjects are compulsory and graded.
02. Specialist subjects:
Specialist subjects are designed to impart the specific knowledge accumulated in each department, aiming to ensure the gradual and progressive immersion of students in the issues inherent to each speciality over the course of a year.
03. Cross-cutting subjects:
Cross-cutting subjects are EQZE's way of offering students the chance to expand their experience, find their specific vocation and explore a diverse range of knowledge pathways. The school expands its limits beyond the strictly cinematographic to include other equally integrating and heterodox areas of knowledge. These subjects are divided into four areas of knowledge:
Materiality: This area includes academic and training proposals centred around the materiality of film, magnetic video and the digital world
Film in Space: The subjects included under this title explore the components of film apparatus, their expansion and questioning, their physical and performative interventions during projection and the exhibitive dimension of the screen itself.
Poetika: Poetika (Poetics) is EQZE's repository of 'grey matter', the container of everything humanistic and thought-related, of aesthetic and political theory. It is also the place in which the school opens itself up to other fields such as music and philosophy.
Techne: The subjects included under this heading aim to complement students' training requirements in the handling of certain technologies.
Residencies are a specific type of interpersonal or group transmission in which filmmakers come to stay at EQZE for varying periods of time while they work on their projects and teach students.
05. Time bank:
Content created and taught by members of the student community to other members of the student community, with the aim of sharing any specialist and non-specialist knowledge they may have amassed before joining the school.
The course includes a minimum of 500 classroom teaching hours. Classes are given in-person.
The academic year is organised around six modules of varying duration. The first five modules (September-July) are teaching modules and are conducted face-to-face. The sixth (August-December) is a mixed module (teaching and end-of-course assignment) and is semi face-to-face. Courses last for a total of fifteen months, structured in a circular fashion in order to reflect the ‘non-linear’ philosophy of learning and experience that underpins the entire EQZE initiative.
The three degrees offered by EQZE have a duration of 60 ECTS.
All modules constitute a unit in themselves, are consistent in their teaching style and conform to a single internal structure which repeats itself in a cyclical fashion: the module begins with the core subjects, before moving on to the specialist and cross-cutting ones and concluding with a community week or weeks called the Akelarre. Each module is separated by a study week or weeks, in which there are no face-to-face classes.
EQZE sees itself as an experience-based initiative that goes well beyond a merely academic project, hence the expansive nature of its syllabus and activities.
EQZE is a project-based school and students from all three specialist areas must participate in a project or initiative of some kind as an end-of-course assignment. Projects may stem from students’ own initiative or can form part of the different pre-existing avenues of research currently being explored by the school's Research Department. All projects are assigned a tutor who accompanies the student right up to the final presentation.
In addition to these tutorials, EQZE also provides an ongoing tutoring service at various different levels that enables comprehensive monitoring of end-of- course assignments.
End-of-course assignments may take the following forms:
a. Academic project
b. Film preservation and conservation project
c. Programming project
d. Filmmaking project
e. Archive portfolio
The projects are presented to the community at the end of the year, during Hypothesis season. Hypothesis is the name given to the final EQZE event that takes place in December and in which students present their ‘cinema hypotheses’, publicly screening or (in the case of incomplete projects) provisionally materialising their end-of-course assignments.