Álex de la Iglesia
The director, producer and scriptwriter Álex de la Iglesia (Bilbao, 1965) became known as a cartoonist, in the mid-eighties, while studying Philosophy at the University of Deusto. After several projects as an artistic director, he directed the legendary short film ‘Mirindas asesinas’, whose originality and talent seduced, among others, Pedro Almodóvar, the producer, via “El Deseo” of his first feature film, ‘Acción mutante’. Since then, Álex de la Iglesia, has produced truly iconic films in contemporary cinema such as ‘El día de la Bestia’ (The Day of the Beast), ‘Perdita Durango’ (Dance with the Devil), ‘La comunidad’ (Common Wealth), ‘Balada Triste de Trompeta’ (The Last Circus), ‘Las Brujas de Zugarramurdi’ (Witching & Bitching) and ‘Perfectos desconocidos’.
He was born in Madrid in 1976. He studied Fine Arts in Cuenca, where he met Ernesto Sevilla, through whom he got involved in a project that revolutionised television comedy: ‘La hora Chanante’ and subsequently ’Muchachada Nui’ and ‘Museo Coconut’. In 2008 he was part of the cast of the Álex de la Iglesia film ‘Plutón B.R.B. Nero’. Since then, he has been a regular actor of this director (‘Balada triste de trompeta’, ‘Las brujas de Zugarramurdi’, ‘Mi gran noche’) and he has appeared in many other Spanish comedies (Torrente 4 and 5, ‘Los amantes pasajeros’, ‘Negociador’). Areces is also a cartoonist and is part of the “subnorpop” music group Ojete Calor.
Antonio Fraguas, Forges. (Madrid, 1942-2018). He worked at TVE (Spanish Television) until 1973, the year when he began his long and fertile period of professional dedication to graphic humour. Among other media outlets, he collaborated on Diez Minutos, Hermano Lobo, Por Favor, El Jueves… From 1995 on he published a daily joke in El País. He participated in radio programs and directed two films and four comedy series for TV. In 1972 El libro de Forges (The Book of Forges) was published, and it was followed by several titles. He received important awards in recognition of his immense amount of work. Forges was a creator of language, an artist of great stature and his splendid humour will live on among us.
Juan Carlos Ortega
He began working at RNE with Javier Sardá at the age of 18; since then he has been a regular collaborator on radio and television, it is worth highlighting his participation on El lobo estepario with Jesús Quintero, on La radio de Julia with Julia Otero and La ventana with Gemma Nierga, and his interventions on television shows Crónicas Marcianas and Channel 4, with Ana García Siñeriz and Boris Izaguirre. He currently collaborates with Pepa Fernández on the RNE program No es un día cualquiera and with Andreu Buenafuente on Late Motiv on Movistar+. He also has a slot on Cadena Ser, Las noches de Ortega. In 2016 he was awarded the Premio Ondas for his professional trajectory.
She is the second daughter of Antonio Fraguas “Forges”, and has developed her professional career in the non-profit sector. Since 1994 she has headed up the educational foundation United World Colleges, working at the same time in consulting for Foundations and other third sector entities. In 2014, her father, Forges, commissioned her to select the jokes that would be used to create “El libro de los 50 años de Forges” (The Book of 50 Years of Forges). To do so, she spent months immersed in an archive of more than 80,000 cartoon strips.
(Barcelona, 1957) has spent his entire professional life at the Culture section of the daily newspaper El País, where he has specialised in a wide array of subjects such as archaeology, Egyptology, theatre and history. In 2009 he received the National Prize for Cultural Journalism awarded by the Ministry of Culture. On TVE (Spanish TV) he produced the program ‘El reportero de la historia’ (The reporter of history) and on La Ser he stars in the radio program ‘El antropólogo inocente’ (The innocent anthropologist) and he has a slot on the radio show ‘A vivir que son dos días’ of Javier del Pino, on Cadena SER. He has published the books ‘Pilotos, caimanes y otras aventuras extraordinarias’ and ‘Héroes, aventureros y cobardes’ with RBA.
(Madrid, 1960), an historian and writer, thus far he has published several stories and articles, two essays and seven novels, notably including the trilogy starring Isidro Montemayor. ‘Ladrones de tinta’, (Ink Thieves), ‘El gabinete de las maravillas’ (The Cabinet of Wonders) and ‘El reino de los hombres sin amor’ (The Kingdom of Men without Love). The three received the “Spartacus Historical Novel Prize” and the first also obtained the “City of Zaragoza International Historical Novel Prize”. His other novels are ‘El olor de las especias’ (The Smell of Spices), ‘Caminarás con el sol´ (You´ll Walk with the Sun), winner of the 2011 Caja Granada Historical Novel Prize and ´Mala hoja´, published by Reina de Cordelia, the same publisher where you can find his essay ´La oposición´ (The Opposition).
Javier del Pino
(Madrid, 1964) is a journalist and holds a degree in English philology. He began working for Cadena SER in 1988. After participating in news shows such as “Hora 25”, he held the role of Washington correspondent for fifteen years. Since 2012 he has presented and presented “A vivir que son dos días”, the leading weekend morning show in Spain, and a program where humour plays a key role. He has been awarded the Antena de Oro and Ondas prizes among others.
He has been a professor of philosophy for more than thirty years. He has written more than fifty works, including political, literary and philosophical essays, narrative works and theatre, as well as hundreds of articles in both Spanish and foreign press. Some of his books have been translated into more than twenty languages. He holds several honorary doctorates awarded by universities in Spain, Europe and America, as well as different honours. ‘Ética para Amador’ (Ethics for Amador), ‘Política para Amador’ (Politics for Amador) and ‘Las preguntas de la vida’ (The Questions of Life) in which he has attempted to attract young people to philosophy, have become true best sellers.
Born in Bilbao in 1965, he has been the director of the Fundación Juan March since 2003. He won the National Essay Award in 2004 for his first book, ‘Imitación y experiencia’, which – together with ‘Aquiles en el gineceo’ and ‘Ejemplaridad pública’ (Taurus, 2009) – make up a trilogy dedicated to the experience of life. He has gathered his essays and lectures in ‘Ingenuidad aprendida’ and ‘Todo a mil’. Every three weeks, he publishes a philosophical mini-essay in the El Pais supplement. He writes regularly in newspapers, magazines and supplements and is a contributor to Spain’s National Radio (RNE). He is patron of the Teatro Real. In 2012 the magazine Foreign Policy (in Spanish) included him in the list of the fifty best and most influential Latin American intellectuals.
Born in Manchester and the adopted daughter of a couple with scarce financial resources, Jeanette Winterson grew up in an environment where there was a lack of books and an abundance of religious fervour. She left home at the age of sixteen in order to study at Oxford and experience her first love affair with a girl. At the age of twenty-four she enjoyed great success with the publication of ‘Oranges are Not the Only Fruit’, which was followed by, among others, ‘The Passion’, ‘Sexing the Cherry’, ‘Written on the body’ and ‘Lighthousekeeping’, the novel with which Lumen began its library devoted to the most notable works by the author. In 2012 she published her extraordinary memoir ‘Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?’, followed by ‘The Daylight Gate’, ‘The World and Other Places’ and ‘The Gap of Time’. ‘Christmas Days’ is her latest book.
She was born in Madrid in 1971. She is the author of the book of short stories and poems ‘El malestar al alcance de todos’ and of the book of poems ‘Mercado Común’, both published by Caballo de Troya; as well the two nouvelles included in ´La nueva taxidermia´ and the novel ´El genuino sabor´, both published by Literatura Random House. Cebrián is a regular contributor to the newspapers El País, La Vanguardia and Público, and in several cultural magazines such as Eñe, Gatopardo, Revista de Occidente and The Massachusetts Review. She has translated Georges Perec and Alan Sillitoe into Spanish. Mercedes Cebrián is the guest editor of the publisher Caballo de Troya in 2018.
Half of the cult comic pairing Faemino y Cansado, Javier Cansado (Madrid, 1955) is one of the greatest Spanish comedians. He collaborates in several radio and television programs. They notably include his participation for more than a decade in ‘Ilustres Ignorantes’, alongside Javier Coronas and Pepe Colubi, ‘Todopoderosos’ directed by Arturo González Campos and ‘A vivir que son dos días’, the program of Javier del Pino on Cadena SER. He has also participated as an actor in several Spanish films such as ‘Airbag’, ‘Torrente’ and ‘El fin de la comedia’.
She has written in the newspaper El País since the age of 19. For two decades she has worked for El País Semanal and in 2009 she made her debut as a columnist in the summer magazine of this publication. In the section ‘Portera de día´ (Day Porter), she dissected social and political affairs each week with an acerbic and irreverent vision. She currently collaborates with Spanish Television, the magazine Harper´s Bazaar and the program La Ventana on Cadena SER. She has written the Thursday column on the last page of El País since 2015 and, since 2017 she has taken charge of the interview on the last page of the Sunday edition of this newspaper, in the section ‘Gente con Luz’ (People with Light ´Luz´).
(Bucharest, 1956) is a poet, narrator and literary critic. He is considered the most important Romanian narrator at present and is a strong candidate to become the first author who writes in Romanian to obtain the Nobel Prize in Literature. His works, all published in Spain by the publisher Impedimenta, notably include the collection of poems ‘The Levant’, the volumes of stories ‘Nostalgia’ (that opens with his famous short story ‘The Roulette Player’), ‘Beautiful Strangers’ and the autobiographical stories ‘The Brown Eye of Our Love’. ‘Solenoid’ is his latest novel and, according to the critics, his most mature work until now. In 2018 he is going to receive the Prix Formentor Literature Award.
Marian Ochoa de Eribe
She was born in Bilbao in 1964. She holds a Doctorate in Comparative Literature from the University of Deusto, and worked as a Spanish language teaching assistant at Ovidius University of Constanta (Romania) between 1993 and 1997. She has translated a large part of the works of Mircea Cărtărescu for Impedimenta: ‘Nostalgia’, ‘Lulu’, ‘Beautiful Strangers’, ‘The Levant’, ‘The Brown Eye of Our Love´, ‘Solenoid’ and ‘The Left Wing’ (Blinding,1). The direct translation into Spanish of the first of these titles earned her the 2012 Estadio Crítico Prize for Translation for the best work translated into Spanish that year. She is also the translator of the Romanian authors Mihail Sebastian, Mircea Eliade and Panait Istrati.
He was born in Madrid in 1971. In 2004 he founded the publisher Funambulista, which he left in 2007 in order to set up the publisher Impedimenta, alongside his wife, Pilar Adón. In 2008 the publishing company won the National Prize for Best Cultural Publishing Work, alongside the other publishers of the Contexto group. His catalogue proposes a dialogue between the old and the new with authors such as Mircea Cărtărescu, Kingsley Amis, Iris Murdoch, Siegfried Lenz, Dubravka Ugrešić, David Lodge, Eduardo Berti, Jon Bilbao and Penelope Fitzgerald. His works have been recognised on several occasions with prizes such as the Libreter prize and the Euskadi de Plata award. He currently lives and works in Madrid.
Patricia Esteban Erlés
(Zaragoza, 1972) She is a lecturer and columnist for the Heraldo de Aragón. So far, she has published three books of stories: ‘Manderley en venta’, selected for the V Setenil Prize as one of the ten best books of stories published in Spain in 2008, ‘Abierto para fantoches’ and ‘Azul ruso’, by Páginas de Espuma. In 2012, with the same publishing house, she published the book of flash fiction, ‘Casa de Muñecas’ (Doll House) illustrated by Sara Morante. She recently published ‘Las madres negras’ with Galaxia Gutenberg, which earned her the Dos Passos First Novel Prize.
(Valencia, 1973) He is one of the icons of new national fantastic and horror films that have projected Spain´s image abroad in terms of the cultivation of the genre. After co-directing with Jaume Balagueró (with whom he also collaborated on the chilling “Rec”) the documentary ‘OT: La película’, he produced his first solo feature film, ‘El segundo nombre’, which was followed by ‘Romasanta’, ‘Rec3: Genesis’ and his last film, ‘Veronica’.
(Bilbao, 1958) He is a novelist, scriptwriter and publisher. With more than thirty published books, he has received numerous awards, notably including the 2001 Nadal Prize for ‘El niño de los coroneles’; the 2005 Ateneo de Sevilla Prize for ‘El mundo se acaba todos los días’; the 2005 Dulce Chacón Narrative Prize for ‘Invasor’; the 2006 National Prize for Children and Young People´s Literature for ‘Cielo Abajo’; the 2010 Primavera Prize for his novel ‘Todo el amor y casi toda la muerte’ and the 2015 Biblioteca Breve Prize for ‘La isla del padre’. Fernando Marías is also the creator of the project Hijos de Mary Shelley (Children of Mary Shelley), a platform that produces literature, music, performances and theatrical monologues.
She is Yoko Ono, Kim Kardashian, Victoria Abril… and Shrek´s Daughter. She is an actress (‘La que se avecina’, ‘Torrente’, ‘Cuerpo de élite’), comic (‘Homo Zapping’, ‘Tu cara me suena’), dancer (with Chiquilicuatre on Eurovision), presenter (‘Caiga quien caiga’) and chef (‘Celebrity Masterchef’). ‘Late Motiv’, the program that she collaborates on with her husband, Andreu Buenafuente —‘Huevosfuertes’—, also describes her as “A mutant being that dances, sings, pesters, smells, and even presents gadgets. A whirlwind of vitality. A genre in herself for which a definition has not yet been invented”.
(Zumárraga, Gipuzkoa, 1973) A journalist by vocation, she dreamed of writing tales, telling real or imaginary stories and ended up getting her “paws” on what on what she calls “the best job in the world”. Naturally curious, this associate professor of Radio Narrative and Advertising at the University of Navarra, she uses empathy to put herself in the shoes of the other and she believes that all forms of media are valid and should be at the service of citizens, but the radio is her passion. After working at Cope Madrid and Cope La Rioja, in 2002 she joined Cadena Ser and for the last nine years she has directed the chat show “Hoy por hoy Bilbao”.
(Zaragoza, 1947), holds a degree in Journalism, and has lived in Norway and California, where she obtained an M. A. in Spanish and Portuguese Language and Literature from the University of California, Santa Barbara, and she is a member of the Royal Spanish Academy. Among her books, translated into several languages and mainly published by Anagrama, we can cite ‘El bandido doblemente armado’, ‘Una enfermedad moral’, ‘Queda la noche’ (Planeta Prize 1989), ‘Una vida inesperada’, ‘Gente que vino a mi boda’ and ‘Historia de un abrigo’. With La vida oculta (The Hidden Life), she won the 1993 Anagrama Essay Prize.
According to her publishers, Marta Sanz (Madrid, 1967) is unlike any other writer in this country. She uses humour as a diagnostic tool: dry humour and irony are more than a regular weapon in her work, as demonstrated in some of her most renowned novels, ‘Black, black, black’, ‘Un buen detective no se casa jamás’ and ‘La lección de anatomía’, all published by Anagrama. Her latest books are ‘Farándula’, 2016 Herralde Novel Prize, ‘Clavícula’ and the recently published ‘Amor fou’. Marta Sanz is also the author of several collections of poems and essays and regularly collaborates in the cultural sections of El País and in the supplement El Cultural of the newspaper El Mundo.
He began his film career in 1988 with the short film ‘Mamá’, thanks to which he obtained a grant to study film directing in New York. During his time in the United States, he directed the short film ‘Truth and Beauty´, nominated for an Emmy Award, taught classes at the New York Film Academy and directed courses at the universities of Cambridge, Princeton and Yale. With ‘Torremolinos 73’, his first feature film in Spain, he triumphed at several international festivals. His second film ‘Blancanieves’, a silent movie filmed in black and white, obtained ten Goya awards, including best film and director. His latest work is the comedy ‘Abracadabra’.
(Bilbao, 1959). He worked as a scriptwriter on comics (El Víbora, Cimoc…) and television series (Farmacia de guardia, Turno de oficio…). Among other works, he has published the volumes of stories ‘Páginas ocultas de la historia’, written with Fernando Marías, and ´La taberna de los 3 monos´. The novels ‘El oro de los carlistas’, ‘Alacranes en su tinta’, ‘La cuenta atrás’, ‘Voracidad’, Basque Prize for Literature, ‘Ostras para Dimitri’, ‘Pájaros quemados’ and ‘El refugio de los canallas’. The unclassifiable works ‘Tratado sobre la resaca’ and ‘La resaca del amor’, and the compilation of articles ‘El número de tontos’. His work has been translated into French, German, Italian, Russian, Bulgarian, Norwegian and Basque. He is an opinion columnist for El Correo. In 2010 he came up with the idea of the Ja! Bilbao Festival, and he directs it.
(Cork, 1961) or Barry Barrez, his performing name, is a lecturer, writer and stand-up, as well as a singer and musician; he plays the accordion and the Irish whistle. He has spent eight years performing monologues in Basque, after more than four decades living in the Basque Country, where he arrived at the age of 22 without knowing either Basque or Spanish, in order to give English classes. The texts of his shows are inspired by his native land, the history of Ireland and Cork as well as Basque customs and the Basque language. Barry Manley is also the author of the novel ‘New Europeans’ and has collaborated in several programs of the EITB (Basque television service).
Asier y Javier
Asier Sanz (1969) and Javier Gamboa (1965), cartoonist and script writer respectively, form this pair of graphic humourists. They define themselves as “two human beings that are lucky enough to devote themselves to laughter and to be from Bilbao”. They have published in Diario 16, Diario Metro, Deia and El Jueves, among other outlets. In 2013 they published the comic strip “¡Sálvese quien podamos” and won the 6th Caragoler International Graphic Humour Competition. They collaborate in the newspaper Bilbao.
She was born in Huesca in 1985 and has adopted Bilbao as her city. She published her first comic strips in the satirical magazine El Jueves in 2009, a collaboration that she maintained intermittently up until 2016. Since then she has published a weekly page, Dolores and Lolo and collaborates on the website of this magazine. In 2014, she published her first graphic novel, ‘Resaca’ with Astiberri, which earned her a nomination for Best New Author at the 2015 Barcelona International Comic Fair. She has also just published her second long work with Astiberri, ‘Desastre’. Moreu combines her work as a script writer and cartoonist with other illustration projects, she gives talks about comics and runs drawing workshops.