Continuing with the activities that Juan de los Toyos Foundation is carrying out within the current European Project in the months of February and March 2015, we have developed two new experiences for participation and dissemination.

PHOTOGRAPHY CONTEST

First, during the month of February a photography contest on “democratic values and European citizenship” was organized in order to expand the involvement that young people are developing within the Project.

After a period of dissemination and information of the contest, the response of young people has been very positive, having received 45 photographs in just one month.

Participating people under 35 years and educational institutions from the social and youth fields, captured in images their views and experiences on the theme of the contest: ‘democratic values’, ‘European Citizenship’, ‘Totalitarianisms’ and ‘Past and Present of Nazism in Europe’.

The public’s response from diverse backgrounds came to the headquarters of the Foundation in the form of participation; both from the Basque Country, region from which is the Foundation, and from other regions of Spain, and also in other countries of the European Union.

SELECTION OF WORKS

At the end of the contest, the jury also made the selection of photographs that would be part of the exhibition held later. Of the 45 works received, they selected a representative sample of 30.

In turn, the jury appointed two winning photographs. Given the number of entries received, and the quality achieved, distinguished himself with a third recognition (Honours) at a photograph.

The first award went to the work entitled “Buchenwald”, sent from Barcelona by Marc Masana i Artigas. In it, the young man caught the electrified gate separating prisoners from freedom; in his own words, “A perspective from outside the field towards the interior, to emphasize the pain of prisoners locked up there.”

Marc Masana took the picture a month earlier, during the trip he made along with his educational institute Lluch i Rafecas of Vilanova i la Geltrú, as an integral entity of Buchenwald project under the tutelage of Amical in Mauthausen.

The second awarded work came to us from Burgos. Called “For a harmonious, fair and equitable development for all and all citizens of the world”, its author, Enma Sancho Arnáiz, would represent a “human figure that looks to the future, raising the world and forming with their hands the symbol of the dove that represents peace”.

With the distinction of “special mention” a third photograph was recognized. In this case, we got it from the emblematic town of Gernika (ravaged by the Nazi terror during the bloody Spanish Civil War). The author, Jon Beristain Alonso, a member of a photographic association of this town, captured the image titled “Inside/Out” during a visit to Auschwitz. In it, he captured the contrast between life and death, through a vision of the concentration camp.

PHOTOGRAPHY EXHIBITION

The last phase of this activity was to present to the public, the result obtained with the previous contest.

In a university environment, the emblematic building of Bilbao Bizkaia Aretoa, auditorium of the University of the Basque Country, hosted the exhibition organized by the Foundation in the week from 16th to 20th of March.

The inaugural ceremony was conducted by the President of the nonprofit entity, Raul Arza, and the Project Director, Felipe García.

In this event, attended by about fifty people, from among others, the educational field, Raúl Arza highlighted the memory of historical facts to be found in some of the images submitted to the contest and, secondly, the values for coexistence that appear in other photographs, and so appreciated the creativity of their authors. Meanwhile, Felipe García, emphasized the latter claim of the “European program, which is to teach values to young people, and preserve the historical memory”.

Then, the texts produced by the winners in relation to the meaning of his works were read, and finally gave way to an initial tour of the Etxepare room that held the exhibition.