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Berlin and Spain

Guernica film premieres on 79th anniversary of bombings

May 23rd, 2016

Berlin intends to draw from oblivion the bombing of the Condor Legion Guernica. This initiative has been launched on the occasion of the 70th anniversary by a generous program of cultural activities that combines contemporary dance, symposiums, lectures and a film series. Guernica, the city immortalized by Picasso, has become a symbol of war and the suffering of the civilian population.

At the presentation ceremony held at the Cervantes Institute in Berlin, Wippermann, the organizer of the memorial cycle, emphasized the need to "anchor Guernica in the collective memory". Under the slogan 'Remember for peace' you can see the reflection on the bombing from different points of view with the support of the Basque Film Library, Arsenal Cinema and a host of institutions of both countries. The bombardment of the April 26, 1937 at the Basque town of about 5,000 inhabitants, during the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939), was the first indiscriminate air attack on a city and was the prelude to what would happen at the World War and later conflicts. The artist Mikel Aristegui provides a very personal testimony with a presentation of contemporary dance that recreates the fate of his grandfather, Julian Aristegui, one of the 200 shot on the outskirts of Hernani, in one of the cruellest episodes of the Civil War.

"It's a tribute to my father and my family," said Aristegui. "My goal is to speak through movement and express it to as many people as possible," continued the artist, for whom contemporary dance "is too abstract and increasingly removed from the actual facts." Also the film will turn to the historical memory, with 'Guernica in cinema' and two Basque productions of the 80s that address the events of 1937 and its consequences: 'To the four winds / Lauaxeta' by José A. Zorrilla, and 'Gernika, Arbolaren Espiritua' by Laurence Boulting. 'The front of Vizcaya and on July 18', propagandistic production commissioned in 1936 by the news service of the Spanish Falange, is a coproduction with the Third Reich. It presents the bombing as an act of sabotage carried out by the Republicans. Bombing survivors and other victims of fascism will take part in discussions and readings until 6th of May.



News from Berlin
Paola Pluchino, Berlin Global