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APRIL 2018



Book Review






World Cup


MARINA PEREZ DE ARCOS Spanish studies at Oxford Coordinator, teaches at LSE and at Oxford University. Co-founder and director of Oxford Spanish Play. Former BSS Santander Scholar

CAROLINE GRAY Lecturer in Politics and Spanish at Aston University in Birmingham, writes on contemporary Spain

JULES STEWART Journalist and author. Specialises in military history and lived in Madrid for 20 years.

JIMMY BURNS MARAÑÓN Author, journalist and Chairman of the BritishSpanish Society.

SIMON EDMONDSON Madrid based British painter. Exhibiting worldwide since 1980’s

DOMINIC BEGG Former President of TESOLSpain and teacher at ESADE business school. Former Spanish rugby champion.


Welcome back! It is my great pleasure and privilege to present the 246th issue of La Revista. From painters and film directors to university lecturers and acclaimed journalists, in this issue, we have a whole range of contributors who created fantastic material that will not disappoint anyone. Lucas Levitan created our lovely and exclusive cover page about the forthcoming World Cup in Russia this June greatly complementing both, Tomas Hill-Lopez Mechero’s article about the football competition and our chairman Jimmy Burns’ book preview about two of the greatest players of all time: Ronaldo and Messi.

2 – La Revista – Spring/Summer 2018

It is not all about football though. Inside you will find a mix of news, features and columns on a wide range of culture related topics. Our aim, as editorial team, is to make it entertaining as well as informative. We cover the creative and much awarded initiative “Moving cities” where dance, film and public spaces merge to create this inspiring project. We take a look at SCAN, a gallery for Spanish & Latin American artists in London. And last but not least, don’t miss the rather interesting piece ‘Hospital-Palace ‘ by Simon Edmondson in his attempt to decode aspects of the works of Diego Velazquez. We invite you all to continue being part of our charity and join our BSS events to enhance the exchange of ideas and knowledge between the United Kingdom and Spain. Enjoy this new issue and feel free to get in touch with any suggestions. COVER IMAGE COURTESY OF: LUCAS LEVITAN

DUNCAN WHEELER Author and professor of Spanish at the University of Leeds

TOMAS HILL LOPEZ-MENCHERO Modern Languages student and Sport Editor for Palatinate, Durham’s official student newspaper

LAURA GRAN Journalist specialised in Marketing and PR. Deputy Editor of La Revista

LAURA OBIOLS Choreographer, dancer, film and theatre director

DAVID HURST Writer and Executive Council member and Event Manager for BSS

LUCAS LEVITAN Illustrator, creative and art director in Advertising based in Madrid and London. Latest project: Photo Invasion.

CARLOS BARRAGAN Economist and Journalist working in the Cultural office of the Spanish Embassy in London

PAUL PICKERING Art history lecturer, tour guide and member of the Executive Council



Editorial team David Hurst, Alexandra Brown Scholarships Marian Jiménez-Riesco (Trustee) Corporate Supporters/ Advertising Alexandra Brown, José Ivars (Trustee), Patricia María Paya Cuenca Development Secretary María Soriano Casado Events Carmen Young (Trustee), David Hurst, Paul Pickering, Silvia Montes, Jordi Mateu Membership, Finance, and Website Secretary Juan Gomez Garcia Events and Grants Alvaro Cepero Published by the BritishSpanish Society Honorary President H.E. Carlos Bastarreche, Spanish Ambassador Honorary Vice-President Simon Manley, British Ambassador to Spain Chairman Jimmy Burns Marañón Patrons Duke of Wellington, Dame Denise Holt, Lady Maria-Belen Parker, Carmen Araoz de Urquijo, Lady Brennan, Lady Lindsay, John Scanlan, Rt Hon Baroness Hooper, Randolph Churchill, Sir Stephen Wright Trustees Jimmy Burns Marañón (Chairman), Juan Reig Mascarell (Treasurer), Carmen Young, Maria Angeles Jimenez Riesco, José Ivars Lopez, Scott Young, Roger Golland, Hugh Elliot, Cristina Alvarez Campana, Mike Short, Fernando Menendez Other members of the Executive Council David Hurst, Paul Pickering, Alexandra Brown, Eva Sierra, Alberto Linares, Silvia Montes, Jordi Mateu Tudo, Justin Ellis, Julian Barcena, Carolina Jara Huergo, Elisa Ramirez, Maria Perez de Arcos, Patricia Paya The opinions expressed throughout this issue represent those of the authors and contributors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the BritishSpanish Society or those of their supporters. The BritishSpanish Society is a registered charity: 1080250 CONTACT US For all editorial contributions or to comment on an article you have read in La Revista, please write to us at: To enquire about advertising opportunities (including classified adverts) please contact:








































3 – La Revista – Spring / Summer 2018

Executive Editor Jimmy Burns Marañón Editor in Chief Carolina Jara Huergo Deputy Editor Laura Gran Design Carolina Jara Huergo, Julia Burns




4 – La Revista - Spring / Summer 2018


oving Cities is a multi awarded growing

the postcard past portrayed, but cities that are

“I had been making short music videos and

project of film shorts that take a radical

alive, today. “We bring together the best dance

advertising for a long time but in 2010 I was

new approach to dance in public spaces.

institutions local to a particular city, from world-

commissioned by East London Dance and Westfield

The British Spanish Society talks to Jevan

class ballet to street dancers, from physical theatre

to produce a dance film on the emerging landscape

Chowdhury, the brain behind the project. Working

to contemporary dance, and set them against the

of East London. The Olympics was two years away

with the natural hustle and bustle in cities around

urban landscape. Our goal is to build a canon of

and the East London was dramatically changing.

the world, he has paired together dance, music

contemporary art photographs and films that

The brief was to work with local dancers of all

and film into one striking piece of art.

celebrate the cities”, Chowdhury explains.

genres and to capture them against a changing

Just landed from San Francisco, he opens the doors

Since its inception in 2014, the Moving Cities project

of his lovely studio in West London, and apologizes

has won international acclaim described as a fusion

for a pile of mail at his desk “I literally just landed”,

of cinema, art and dance. Eight Moving Cities film

he says. We meet some of the team; they are hard

productions have happened to date, capturing 21

at working on their projects in San Francisco, Tel

cities into still photography media exhibitions,

Aviv and Dallas, the studio is a hive of activity in

including London, Paris, Barcelona, Prague,

“We are currently working with San Francisco Travel

the middle of the quiet leafy Chiswick.

Athens, Melbourne, Dallas, Munich, Yerevan,

and SF Ballet to develop Moving SF while in Israel

Leeds, Brussels, Bucharest and Christchurch,

we are working with Batsheva to produce Moving

New Zealand.

Tel Aviv”, he tells when asked about future projects.

Moving Cities is an artistic comment on cities: the people, the transience, the culture, etc. Not

landscape, like a visual census. The intersection of film, dance and city was exciting. I was also reading Invisible Cities by Italo Calvino and the collision of dance and infrastructure was illuminating. Moving Cities was born”, he says.


Using the camera as a visual narrator and dancer

striking. We share the same fears imposed on us by

as protagonist his films are genres in themselves, a

modern day city life - the uberisation, the impact

hybrid of documentary and experimental narrative.

of Airbnb, gentrification. Moving Cities is about

In his signature films, the camera is never still and

movement and the uncontrolled acceleration into

the movement emerges from every corner of the

a rather noisy 21st century. We are all human and

composition. “I find the harmony of dance, city,

seek a place of calm now and again, perhaps a

cars and trains fascinating”, the director, who is

primordial, wordless, dose of dance is something

awash with ideas, shares.

we all need”, he says with a smile in his eyes.

“Cities, like dreams, are made of desires and fears”


For more information, please visit the official website:

Italo Calvino, Invisible Cities Photo: Pepa Yepes

he once managed to drop his camera in the

Jevan Chowdhury (London, UK, 1970) is an award

marina whilst choreographing two boats and a

winning filmmaker and founder of Wind & Foster,

dancer on a surfboard in a dock in New Zealand.

a design driven creative studio based in London.

Many anecdotes include members of the public

He has created work for international artists,

spontaneously getting involved in shoots.

companies and venues for both commercial and

“Recently in San Francisco, one of our dancers,

creative purposes. He is also the creative director of

Nathanial, decided to do a couple of poses in his

Moving Cities. He has won 21 awards and exhibited

thong. A large crowd gathered including a hefty

at 68 festivals with print exhibitions in Sadler’s

American tourist who took off his own clothes

Wells, London City Hall, The AT&T Aurora Exhibition,

and photo bombed Nathaniel. We love crowd

i/o/lab Norway and Standard Vision Hollywood. His

participation!”, he laughs. “We often attract the

work features in publications such as LensCulture,

attention of the local law enforcement. More

Yatzer, Nowness and countless blogs. He is part

often than not its to be in the film or photo”.

of the board of trustee’s for Visiting Arts UK. He is

Their latest iteration, Moving Barcelona project is near completion - the work of 40 dancers set against one of the most visited cities in the world, edited into one short, impactful film, with celebrated actor Pep Munné, who joined as a narrator. An exhibition at the iconic Gaudi’s Casa Batlló is planned in June this year. “We found the similarities in both London and Barcelona to be

based in London, with his wife and his three kids, but regularly works internationally.

5 – La Revista – Spring / Summer 2018

When discussing anecdotes he explains how



The traditional Christmas party was held in the Crypt of St James’s Roman Catholic Church, Marylebone. Minister-Counsellor for Cultural and Scientific Affairs, Miguel Oliveros Torres, handing out the raffle prizes. Exciting singer, Maria de Juan with amazing pianist Javier Rodriguez and band played music to entertain us. Our traditional villancicos and Christmas carols club, delicious canapes, fine Spanish wines, beers and Cava and the best BritishSpanish friends in London and beyond.

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BY PAUL PICKERING The British-Spanish Societ y and Around

seemed worlds away from the Seville of the Semana

Not only his works but also his life and times

Art’s ‘once in a lifetime’ trip to Seville in early

Santa with its processions and iconography which

became a leitmotiv of our walks and visits in the

February more than fulfilled its promise of two

are the very epitome of the Counter-Reformation

company of our well informed and engaging guide,

days’ total immersion in the ambience, art and

response to the human condition. Emerging, not

Virginia Vargas.

gastronomy of one of the most paradoxical of

entirely unexpectedly, into a patio, we exchanged

European cities whose commercial rise, apogee

our winter coats for its enveloping intimacy. If a

and decline coincided with the Golden Age of

patio is open to the sky, then intimacy, claustral

Spanish culture. Paradoxical because as the silver,

and domestic, links with a sense of the infinite to

gold , spices - and whatever else regulated from

provide - to borrow a phrase of Colm Tóibín’s - “

the splendidly preserved Casa de Conratacion at

a little realm of relaxed and happy interchange”.

the heart of the city’s casco viejo - poured in, the

Our patio was covered by a glazed ceiling which

cathedral, churches and religious institutions were

charmed us with the reflected glow of the candles

built and filled to overflowing with magnificent

on our tables three storeys below as we dined and

and sometimes chilling examples of Counter-

listened to opera arias.

whole of society from grandees to the underclass to seek those things which are above. Often seductive and occasionally horrifying, the copious, all pervasive, unavoidable imagery increased in intensity of expression from the mid-seventeeth century as the flow of trade diminished and riots, the Black Death and drought took their toll. As one Professor Dominguez Ortiz laconically puts it, “Gold and silver from the Indies gave way to a fear of death”.

company of fellow members of the Society, it is Murillo’s Santas Justa y Rufina. Martyrs of third century Roman Seville (Hispalis), they were highly honoured in the medieval Mozarabic liturgy. The pious legend of their gruesome torture and execution as recounted in the Martyrologium Hieronymianum is as repellent as the two memento

Our visit to the Andalusian capital was the

mori paintings by Valdés Leal which we saw in the

British-Spanish Society’s way of marking the four

Hospital de la Caridad on the Sunday morning.

hundredth anniversary of the birth of Bartolomé

They marked, in fact, the nadir of our experience of

Esteban Murillo, an artist whose work across

world and pleasure denying art. Murillo’s portrayal

Europe and, maybe particularly in England,

of the two young, graceful, martyr saints holding

was more widely known than that of any other

nonchalantly for our contemplation the elegant

Spanish artist before the nineteenth century. He

Giralda tower was, in contrast, almost an exercise

inspired Gainsborough. Sometimes dismissed as

in art for art’s sake and a reminder of Keats’s lines,

sentimental, mawkish and implausibly idealising,

‘ “Beauty is truth, truth beauty,” - that is all ye

his work has undergone considerable re-evaluation

know on earth, and all ye need to know.’

in recent decades. Regardless of subject matter,

And yet, on the first evening of our visit as we

his oeuvre will always be of fruitful and life-

entered the home of the Italian consul in the old

enhancing interest for lovers of form and colour.

Jewish quarter, the Barrio de Santa Cruz, we

His draughtsmanship is superb.

EXCLUSIVE BALLET NIGHT 15 FEBRUARY 2018 English National Ballet’s Dancer in the Spotlight Members and friends of the BSS had a wonderful evening attending a very special event for Patrons of the English National Ballet. In Dancer in the Spotlight our members were delighted with a live rehearsal by outstanding ballerina, Sarah Kundi, in her role as Myrtha in Akram Khan’s new choreography of Giselle. It followed by a fascinating and insightful talk and Q&A with the ballerina about her career and work with the ENB.

the experience of art in the thoroughly congenial

FERIA DE LONDRES - IN COLLABORATION WITH ILLUSION FLAMENCA AND PEÑA FLAMENCA 8 APRIL 2018 Seville’s Feria de Abril in Pimlico! An evening of festivities to celebrate Spring – suitable for families with children. Authentically decorated “caseta”, traditional food, sevillanas, best costume competition and more. Live Sevillanas & Rumbas music by Tony Tonks, Fernando de Sevilla, Lola Rueda and Demi Sabat. Hosted by Ilusion Flamenca Director Angela Alonso & Peña Flamenca de Londres in collaboration with the British Spanish Society.

7 – La Revista – Spring / Summer 2018

Reformation art, an art focused on encouraging the

If I had to choose one painting as a spur to memories of walks, meals, conversations and





s our very own arts guru Paul Pickering reminded us, London’s National Gallery is ‘teeming with art’, and ‘many walls remind you of Christ and the Saints’. This incomparable cultural meeting point in London’s Trafalgar Square, where visitors from all nations gather, Puritanism has thankfully come and gone, while the imagery of the Counter-Reformation, to which we owe South Europe much thanks, endures. The latest Pickering tour, timed appropriately ahead of the Christian Easter, took us direct to a masterpiece: the Italian painter and architect of the High Renaissance Raphael’s The Mond Crucifixion.

8 – La Revista - Spring / Summer 2018

And there Pickering effortlessly drew us into the canvas with his expert’s eye. It is study of striking contrasts-the dancing angels closest to the dead Christ- as well as of sublime harmony in colour and symbolism. There is a pervading serenity as the dark cross rises through bareness to golden hills and up to the skies where the sun and the moon preside over the cosmic event of the death of their Creator. On we went, with further incisive reflections on Carlo Crivelli’s The Dead Christ, and paintings by Bellini and Mantegna from the late 15th, early 16th centuries. Pickering talked to us movingly of ‘life and death juxtaposed’, ‘art consoling us with its beauty’, before taking us into one of the museum’s larger rooms and an example of ‘art for art’s sake’ in the exuberance of Paulo Veronese’s Dream of St Helena. By now we were well into a journey without a map, full of surprises, as Pickering moved from one room to the next, to identify hidden jewels fir us we might have otherwise overlooked.

Among those most discussed were two magnificent pictures themed around the story of the thirteenth apostle Mary Magdalene. One had her magnificently translucent as painted by Savoldo. The other was Titian’s Noli me Tangere, her face full of rapture, ‘literally falling for Him’, and the risen Christ ‘very coy’, telling her, ‘do not touch me’, Pickering commented. Other paintings by the great master Titian, similarly enthused us. They showed his ‘wonderful imagination, from the Resurrection to Diana’s Hunters’. And then it was time to bridge our tour with Spain, and one of King Philip 11n’d favorite paintings. Pickering picked on the striking humanity of Hieronymus Bosch’s Christ Mocked, contrasting the suffering of Jesus with the cruelty of his tormentors. Then less an after-thought than a soothing balm, Pickering pointed us in the direction of the special exhibition at the National Gallery of Murillo’s engaging portraits, also well worth seeing, with the depictions of a Sevillean street urchin and Two Women in a Window, real treasures of the best of Spanish art. Another Five star Pickering show. How lucky the BritishSpanishSociety is to have this learned and simpatico art expert on its Executive Committee, enrich our lives with his hugely original and memorable exclusive tours. Gracias, Paul. Keep them coming.

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9 – La Revista – Autumn/Winter Spring / Summer 2017 2018

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THURSDAY 26TH APRIL “A NIGHT OF LITERATURE & WINE AT CAÑADA BLANCH SPANISH SCHOOL” April 23rd connects English and Spanish Literature. William Shakespeare and Miguel de Cervantes died on the 23rd of April 1616. Come and join us to commemorate International Book Day at Vicente Cañada Blanch Spanish School. Bring an English or Spanish book which fascinates you and feel free to read for us a selection of the most remarkable paragraphs. You can swap your book with someone else’s at the end of the event. . TIME AND DATE: April 16th. From 7pm to 9pm VENUE: Vicente Cañada Blanch Spanish School, 317-318 Portobello Rd, London W10 5SZ TICKETS: £10 BSS members / £15 non members *A glass of wine and nibbles included. Event liven up with classical music played by Cañada Blanch’s students

THURSDAY 17TH MAY Private tour Spanish artists in the Tate Modern with Lecturer Paul Pickering at Tate Modern + tea/coffee & cake Tate Modern is one of a family of four galleries which developed from the original National Gallery of British Art founded by the sugar magnate Sir Henry Tate at the end of the 19th century. On our tour with Paul Pickering we shall explore aspects of Tate’s vast holdings of modern and contemporary art. Particular attention will be given to Picasso, Dalí and British artists. Meet just inside the top entrance of the Boiler House at 15.00 for a tour which will last just over an hour. As usual on these occasions, members will have the opportunity to get to know each other over tea and scones at the conclusion of the visit.

TIME AND DATE: May 17th at 3pm VENUE: Tate Modern Gallery, Bankside; London, SE1; United Kingdom TICKETS: £15 BSS members / £20 non members


10 – La Revista - Spring / Summer 2018

“London - through Spanish Eyes” bike ride DATE: June 10th VENUE: Spanish Embassy, 24 Belgrave Square SW1X 8SB TIME: Bike ride 11.30am, picnic in Regent’s Park 1.30pm TICKETS: FREE

A gently-paced, escorted bike ride visiting sites of Spanish historical significance in central London, ending with a family picnic in Regent’s Park. Starts 11.30am on Sunday 10 June outside the Spanish Embassy, 24 Belgrave Square SW1X 8SB. Bring your own or hire bikes from the rank on the corner of Belgrave Place and Eaton Square A3217. Family Picnic and Games from 1.30pm in Regent’s Park, left of York Bridge by the York Gate Entrance. Starting from the Spanish Embassy, this escorted bike ride will visit sites of Spanish interest around central London, ending two hours later in Regent’s Park with a family picnic. Bring your own picnic blanket, food and drinks. The bike ride is open to members and their friends, and especially to children over the age of 10 who are confident riding on London streets on a Sunday. Bicycle helmets must be worn while riding. Numbers are limited for safety to the first 12 who sign up via the website.

THURSDAY 28TH JUNE BRITISH Spanish Society Summer Reception at residence HE Spanish Ambassador The reception is kindly hosted by His Excellency the Spanish Ambassador Carlos Bastarreche, Honorary President of the Charity, who generously opens the doors of his residence to the members and friends of the Charity giving an invaluable support to the BSS mission building stronger links between Great Britain and Spain through our events programme, publications and the Charity’s Scholarship Programme. The Annual Summer Reception is one of the highlights of the British Spanish Society’s calendar, the best way to meet British and Spanish, old and new friends before the holiday season. International singer and composer María de Juan will enliven the evening with her stunning voice and with virtuoso Javier Rodríguez at the piano. María de Juan will sing a repertoire of soul music hits spiced up with flamenco style in a very refreshing and BritishSpanish approach to the Summer season.

TIME AND DATE: June 28th from 6.30pm to 9.00pm VENUE: dence of HE the Spanish Ambassador, 24 Belgrave Square, London SW1X 8QA DRESS CODE: Smart/Cocktail (Lounge suit with tie, NO jeans/NO sneakers) TICKETS: £45 BSS members / £60 non members *BSS member have priority booking, however unpaid tickets cannot be reserved

Gourmet Spanish tapas will be served, delicious Jamón Ibérico Cinco Jotas with the magical cut of international Cortador Jose Sol, ice cold Mahou San Miguel beers will be served along with Cava and wines by Codorníu Raventós



TIME AND DATE: October 22nd at 5.30pm VENUE: Jock Colville Hall, Churchill College, Cambridge Members wishing to attend lecture and private reception on 22nd October should email *The exhibition will be open to the public from 23rd October to 2nd November.

11 – La Revista – Spring / Summer 2018

with Dr Peter Martland, Cambridge University and Jimmy Burns, author of Papa Spy



Adventure Activities for Families... that won’t break the bank!


s summer approaches, David Hurst suggests destinations and affordable activities for you and your family within easy reach of London.

UP TO 1/2 HOUR FROM LONDON Dinosaur Sculptures, Crystal Palace Park FREE! Created in 1885 (although historically inaccurate!), presenting 15 types of dinosaur in exciting poses. Play areas, sand pit, maze and miniature train rides in summer - plus café


12 – La Revista - Spring / Summer 2018

The Look Out Discovery Centre, Bracknell – cycling FREE Hands-on science and nature exhibits wit 90 activities, next to the best free off-road cycling tracks in Surrey. Launch a hydrogen rockets, play with boats in the indoor stream or build a house with friends. Adults £7.60 Child £5.20 Family £20.40

UP TO 1.5 HOURS FROM LONDON Groombridge Place and Enchanted Forest, near Tonbridge, Kent Enchanted forest adventure with the UK’s longest and highest treetop walkway through the tree canopy of oak, pine, beech and chestnut trees. Adult £12.95 Child £9.95 Family £39.50 Watercress Line, Hampshire Full sized steam railway running 10 miles from Alresford to Alton in Hampshire with elements used in the Harry Potter films. Adult/senior £16 Child (age 2-16) £8 Family £40 Enjoy your family days out and do let us know how you get on:












Glasgow International / Glasgow

Wallace Collection / London

For its 24th edition, ¡VIVA! returns with a

Renowned contemporary artist Esther

Marking the 400th anniversary of Esteban

venue-wide celebration of Spanish and Latin

Ferrer joins the official program of Glasgow

Murillo, and alongside the exhibition held

American culture, presenting a carefully

International, presenting her work for the first

by the National Gallery, ARTES will present a

created program of film, theatre and visual

time in the United Kingdom

symposium on the Spanish painter. Focusing

arts, all of the curated around the idea of

on the master’s portraits, the symposium


will be part of a larger series of conferences








11TH – 24TH JUNE


Glasgow / Glasgow University Union


For their 2018 edition, BE FESTIVAL turns the

The Society of Spanish Researchers in the

For over five years, FeSTeLõn has been

notion of conventional theatre upside down.

United Kingdom (SRUK/CERU) is pleased to

bringing Spanish Theatre companies to

It crosses borders, creative disciplines and

announce that the registration for the 6th

London, to perform an exceptional mix

blurs the boundary between audience and

International Symposium SRUK/CERU: “Back

of critically acclaimed productions. The

artist. With a programme focused on Euro-

to the future” is already open.

programme includes performances, a series

pean productions, this edition will mark the

of talks and workshops and an education

8th anniversary of the festival, celebrating

strand. Plays are performed in Spanish with

Spanish theatre at its core

English surtitles


13 – La Revista – Spring / Summer 2018

held by the Wallace Collection.




he risk to global civilisation is as high today as it has ever been, in the face of threats of nuclear weapons and climate change, a group of leading scientists reported last January, while other analysts also point to dangers like pandemics, cyber-attacks, and socioeconomic and political disintegration. But is all doom and gloom, or is there room for optimism?

14 – La Revista - Spring / Summer 2018

Thus, did the BSS chairman, author and journalists Jimmy Burns Marañón introduce a well-attended conference in Madrid jointly organised by the BSS and the IE Business School on March 15th. The event in the IE Business School’s impressive Aula Magna or main lecture hall, followed a BBC-Question Time format with top panellists engaging in lively discussion between themselves. They also answered questions and comments from the audience, which included many supporters of the BSS, among them postgraduate students, and several distinguished guests including the former Spanish ambassador to London Marques de Tamaron, senior UK and

Spanish lawyers and business executives, and representatives of the diplomatic community. First off, the block was the English science journalist Laura Spinney, author of Pale Rider, the Spanish Flu of 1918, just published in a Spanish as El Jinete Palido. She spoke almost exactly a hundred years on from when the first case of the socalled “Spanish” flu was officially recorded in a military camp in Kansas. During what would turn out to be the deadliest flu pandemic on record, one in three people on Earth fell ill and between 50 and 100 million of them died. Nobody thought that flu could cause such devastation, until it did, and ever since the enduring fear is that a similar thing could happen again. In fact, experts believe another flu pandemic is inevitable. The only questions they can’t answer with any precision, for now, are “when” and “how big”. Today, at least two influenza A subtypes are only a few mutations away from acquiring deadly human-to-human transmission, making them capable

of causing potentially devastating pandemics: H5N1 and H7N9. In a 2013 report, the World Bank estimated that a future flu pandemic could claim in the region of 33 million lives and trigger a major global recession. It would cause, the report predicted, “misery, economic decline, and societal disruptions on a global scale”. The World Health Organization recently acknowledged that the next pandemic could be caused by a disease human don’t yet know, when it added “X” to its list of leading disease threats. Whatever the disease is that causes the next pandemic, we are woefully unprepared for it. Public investment in pandemic readiness falls very short of what is needed to make our public health systems resilient to such a shock and has been dwindling rather than increasing in recent years. On top of that, a global anti-vaccine movement is growing in strength. We’re suffering from pandemic fatigue, perhaps because we’ve forgotten the horrors of 1918.

She listed the most important challenges which created new potential for confrontations between nations: 1.The eroding of the Atlantic Alliance and transatlantic relationship which has been supporting the liberal world order since WWII 2.The rise of revisionist and revolutionary powers- China, Russia, Iran (even each one of them pose different challenge) 3.Return of geopolitical competition of great powers 4.The rise of populist and authoritarian ideologies While a nuclear war was a real treat, we should make to make a difference between the proliferation of nuclear arms and threats of nuclear war. The First Five - the US, the Soviet Unión, France, Britain and China - practiced competitive proliferation, meanwhile, Israel, India and Pakistan went “asymmetric proliferation” to equalize the conventional edge held by their neighbors. North Korea and Iran have different motives, and if they achieve the atomic warheads, it will be a step for new proliferation. With proliferation we have bigger chance of war, but not automatically. Anything that reduces the risk of war reduces the risk of nuclear war.

Is there room for optimism? Yes, because not every problem is crisis, and yes, because we have large experience of solving problems by the values of enlightenment – reason, science, humanism and progress, and of freedom and democracy helped us to solve gradually many problems. With good leadership and excellent ideas, we can do what we really want, because at the end this is the world created by humans. One of the main points of Laura’s book is that the Spanish flu taught us, that another flu pandemic is inevitable, but whether it kills 10 million or 100 million will be determined by the world into which it emerges. Up to us in which kind of world we would like to be. A more pessimistic note was struck by Michael Stothard, the Financial Times Madrid correspondent. By far the most important negative externality of humanity’s extraordinary exponential increase in wealth and population in over the past 200-years is the environment. He argued that covering the COP 21 climate change conference in Paris for the Financial Times gave him an insight into why this is something that humans do not appear to have the capacity to solve through policy making. This agreement after a superhuman effort by all involved - locked in only voluntary commitments that themselves left the world with global warming of 4 degrees from pre-industrial levels – enough to cause mass drought, flooding and a dangerous rise in global sea levels. The only obvious solution seemed to be some kind of technological magic bullet in the distant future – so fingers crossed. This was a theme that Manuel Muñiz, Dean of the School of International Relations at IE warmed to as he showed filmed

evidence of the latest scientific advances in the area of health, with innovative computerised implants and systems providing speech and movement to the dumb and physically disabled. Earlier, Muñiz, a renowned expert in innovation, geopolitics and regional and global governance, told the audience that while new technologies were subjecting the world’s economies to massive structural change, wages were no longer playing the central redistributive role they once did. Thus, unless the decoupling of productivity and wages was addressed, the political convulsions many countries are experiencing will only intensify. Addressing the issue of artificial intelligence, Muñoz, suggested we should be less worried by the threat of artificial intelligence leading to robotic overlords than by growing economic inequality and a new global order posing more complex challenges while widening the gap between the rich and the poor. Burns Marañón concluded by asking whether or not the time had come for a fundamental philosophical shift of paradigm, towards a new shared view of the world that took something from traditional Catholic social teaching and reasserted the concept of the common good. The BSS was clear in its mission: it built bridges not walls. A reception after the event was kindly supported by Codorniu & Mahou. Special thanks too to our partners the IE Business School. This panel is available online. Please follow the link: watch?v=x38UGpHZUss&feature=youtu. be

Photos: Mercedes Nieto Raventós

15 – La Revista – Spring / Summer 2018

On an only slightly more upbeat note, Mira Milosevoch-Juaristi security expert with the Royal Elcano Institute in Madrid noted that the conference marked a historic moment. “We talk about the Spanish flu 100 years later, and we are here with two grandchildren and one grandchild of the great doctor and intellectual Gregorio Marañón who had been involved in managing the disaster of Spanish flu. “



Top right from left: Ignacio Peyro, Carole Souter, Alfredo Perez de Arminan and Marinna Perez de Arcos


fter a word of welcome from Master of

and 600 hectares of historic gardens. Pérez de

the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the

St Cross College, University of Oxford,

Armiñán’s lecture was accompanied by stunning

Heritage Lottery Fund, and is currently a Trustee

Carole Souter, and a brief introduction by

photos of the sites.

of Historic Royal Palaces and Chair of the Board

16 – La Revista - Spring / Summer 2018

Dr Marina Pérez de Arcos, Spanish Studies at Oxford

of Visitors of the Oxford University Museum of

Coordinator, and Cervantes Institute-London

Perez de Armiñán then went on to explain what

Natural History, then showed a captivating short

Director Ignacio Peyró, President of Patrimonio

the new Museum of Royal Collections will be like

film of Historic Royal Palaces. Souter highlighted

Nacional Alfredo Pérez de Armiñán gave a special

when it opens in winter 2020. The Museum of Royal

the Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red work of

lecture on the Spanish Patrimonio Nacional and

Collections stands right next to the Almudena

installation art placed in the moat of the Tower

the Museum of Royal Collections.

Cathedral and the Royal Palace of Madrid, perched

of London commemorating the centenar y of

on a cliff overlooking the Manzanares River and the

the outbreak of World War I and the opening the

Perez de Armiñán gave a succinct account of the

Madrid mountains, which are right now covered

doors of Hillsborough Castle in Northern Ireland,

institution’s long history and an overview of the

in snow. This will be a moving museum with

including a number of improvements to the

many sites managed by Patrimonio Nacional,

objects from different Patrimonio Nacional sites

infrastructure of the estate, as some of Historic

including the Royal Palace of Madrid, the Royal

continuously coming and going and over 60%

Royal Palaces most recent milestones.

Palace of La Granja de San Ildefonso, two UNESCO

unseen permanent objects spanning the Middle

World Heritage sites (El Escorial and Aranjuez),

Ages through to the early 21st century. The gardens

The talk was followed by a Q&A session, which

and several perhaps less well known sites, such

will also be redone to turn the Royal Palace complex

allowed the two speakers to engage in an absolutely

as the 12th century monastery Santa María la Real

into a new major cultural hub for Madrid. Pérez

fascinating cross-Channel conversation about

de Las Huelgas, the 15-16th century monastery

de Armiñán is the first president of Patrimonio

the specific joys and challenges faced by both

San Jerónimo de Yuste, where Emperor Charles

Nacional to speak at the University of Oxford.

institutions, including public engagement, funding,

V died, and the 18th century San Antonio de la Florida shrine, as well as 22,000 hectares of forests

and possible avenues for collaboration. Carole Souter, who is former Chief Executive of

The event was held at the brand new West Wing

Lecture Theatre at St Cross College and was well-attended by a large international, intergenerational, and interdisciplinary audience, including Professor Sir John Elliott. Cervantes Institute London, St Cross College, and Spanish Studies at Oxford all teamed up to organise the event. Organisers: Spanish Studies at Oxford, Cervantes Institute London and St Cross College, University of Oxford, all teamed up to host this event. Spanish Studies at Oxford brings together all Spain-related research and events across the University of Oxford: Instituto Cervantes London is the official Spanish Language and Cultural centre: St Cross College is one of the 38 Colleges of the University of Oxford. It is a hub for Archeology, Conservation and Heritage Studies: https://www.stx. Speaker Bios: Alfredo Pérez de Armiñán is president of Patrimonio Nacional. He was Deputy General Director of Culture of UNESCO and has held many senior positions in the field of Spanish cultural heritage. Carole Souter, current Master of St Cross College, has also held important positions in the field of cultural heritage, as Chief Executive of the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Heritage Lottery Fund, and is currently a Trustee of Historic Royal Palaces and Chair of the Board of Visitors of the Oxford University Museum of Natural History.


Abogados – Lawyers – Anwälte

Head Office Barcelona Avda. Diagonal 508, 4º 2ª 08006 Barcelona (Spain) Phone: +34 93 217 37 46 Fax: +34 93 217 30 15 Ibiza Branch Office Calle Vicente Cuervo 10, bajos 07800 Ibiza


17 – La Revista – Spring / Summer 2018




FRANCO: ANATOMY OF A DICTATOR As Spain looks back on forty years of ratification of the

by the grace of God”. So read the inscription on the back of all

Constitution that restored democracy after the death of Francisco

Spanish coins minted since December 1946, approved by the

Franco, political bitterness and nagging unhealed wounds

unanimous decision of the Plenary of the Cortes.’

demonstrate that the demise of a tyrant does not as a matter

18 – La Revista - Spring / Summer 2018

of course eliminate his legacy.

Who was this strutting, Buster Keaton-like, squeaky-voiced general, the self-styled saviour of Christian civilisation from

Winter was making a slow entry into Madrid November 1975.

the menace of godless communism? Spaniards who revile his

The autumnal weather was stoked, perhaps, by an overheated

memory (the majority, according to recent surveys) robotically

political climate. Franco lay in a coma in La Paz Hospital, where

condemn him as a fascist. However, unlike José Antonio, Franco

a team of doctors were confronted with the frightening dilemma

had little interest in the doctrines of fascism, except when it

of when to switch off the Caudillo’s life-support machine. The

suited his political purposes to spout off Mussolini-type rhetoric.

decision was taken in the early hours of 20th November, the

For that matter, he had little interest in the dogmas of the

same date as the execution in 1936 of José Antonio Primo de

Catholic Church, though this too needed to be kept on side.

Rivera, founder of the Falange. In this way, supporters of both

Franco was exclusively a Francoist. Moradiellos makes this clear

despots would be spared the awkwardness of having to hold

when he says, ‘The only defining and configurative constant of

back-to-back commemorations.

the Franco regime was the presence of General Franco as an

As Enrique Moradiellos states in his incisive study, Franco is an uncomfortable spectre from the past. ‘In the public memory of Spaniards and of European and international contemporaries, the author says, ‘Franco was above all the “Caudillo of Spain

absolute Bonapartist military dictator of unappealable judgement and sovereign lifetime power.’ The Caudillo skilfully juggled a grouping of mutually hostile Falangists, Carlist traditionalists and the army to become the unifying symbol of power, during the 1936-1939 Civil War, until his death in 1975.

BOOK REVIEW What is undeniable is that Franco’s destructive impact on

Franco cannot be forgiven, nor can the vestiges of his rule be

Spain’s social and intellectual fabric carries on long after his

ignored. Si monumentum requiris, circumspice. (If you seek a

disappearance. Surveys conducted in the Basque Country, show

monument, look around you.)

that many young people still detect the root of their political conflict with Madrid in the Franco regime. This resentment is coupled with widespread ignorance of the man who ruled Spain for nearly forty years. The results of a series of polls carried out in November 2000, on the twenty-fifth anniversary of Franco’s death, did not vary substantially from the situation of 15 years earlier. In fact, it emphasized those trends. For example, a new survey among secondary school pupils asking for their impressions about the Caudillo demonstrated respondents’ difficulty in ‘placing him in a precise moment of history’, with replies as peculiar as they were anachronistic: the king before Juan Carlos, Franco, in the Battle of Las Navas de Tolosa [1212], Franco, in the Cortes de Cádiz [1812]. In an effort to bring reconciliation to a still-divided nation, in 2007 the Socialist government of José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero enacted the Historical Memory Law. This recognises the victims on both sides of the Spanish Civil War, while bestowing rights on the descendants of victims of the war and the Franco dictatorship. Importantly, the law formally condemns the Franco regime. This legal initiative will hopefully have a conciliatory effect on the Spanish people, yet the debate on the nature of the Franco years continues. According to Moradiellos, if that political regime had to be defined in a concise and brief way, one could resort to Franco’s own words in a speech in Seville on 16 April 1953: ‘In short: we

DISCOUNT CODE FOR LA REVISTA READERS: FRANCO1830 30% off = £14 RRP £20 Valid until 30th June 2018 Publisher: I.B. Tauris

are the counterpart of the Republic.’ The author explains, ‘The anti-democratic, counter-revolutionary and dictatorial character did not suffer during the long evolution of the regime and the ongoing biography of its titular head, despite pragmatic changes in tune with the evolution of the international context.’ Franco himself acknowledged in his message of the end of 1964, celebrating twenty-five years as Caudillo, that during this

that justified our intervention in public life.’ ‘Perhaps,’ says Moradiellos, ‘the imperviousness of the unperturbed Caudillo lay in his desire to cling on to absolute power.’ This biography stands as a major addition to the understanding of one of the most enigmatic dictators of the 20th century.

Photo credits: - Left: Franco and his wife Carmen at a social event in the mid-1960s (Album / Universal Images Group / Universal History Archive \ UIG) - Right: Book cover of “Franco: Anatomy of a Dictator”

19 – La Revista – Spring / Summer 2018

quarter century, he always remained ‘faithful to the principles




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n 1916, Weetman Pearson – a Huddersfield businessman who became Lord Cowdray in 1910 – donated the generous sum of £10,000 (worth more than half a million pounds in today’s money) for the establishment of a Chair of Spanish at the University of Leeds. The post was not actually filled until 1954, when Reginald Brown (who had been appointed as a lecturer in 1945) became the first Cowdray Chair. Spanish had, however, been taught since 1918, the young department receiving mention in a 1925 fund-raising film (available at film/watch-university-leeds-1925-online), which called on the men and women of Leeds and Yorkshire to donate, and ‘help to make the University worthy of its great tasks, worthy of its great achievements, worthy of your great county’. As reported in the 2007 inaugural lecture by Paul Garner (the fifth Cowdray Chair), Reginald Brown had, at the end of World War II, claimed that the ‘University, like so much else in England, exhibited the dilapidated face of poverty, aggravated by five years of recent neglect’. This is a far cry from the twenty-first-century model by which vice-chancellors are now all too keen to invest in buildings. Much else has changed in the interim with Catalan and Portuguese now taught alongside the language of Cervantes, and an increasing emphasis on Latin American studies. Stephanie Dennison, currently President of the Association of the Lusitanists of Britain and Ireland, was promoted to become Leeds’s first Chair of Brazilian Studies in 2015 whilst Sofia Martinho is both Director of the Leeds Camões Centre and President of the UK Association of Teachers and Researchers of Portuguese Languages. Coming to the end of my D.Phil, I first came to Leeds in 2009 and was immediately impressed by a vibrant collegial environment in which teaching and producing world-leading research were seen to be complementary rather than contradictory activities. Our size and

diversity (Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies [SPLAS] at Leeds in the biggest unit of its kind in the UK) allows us to offer a broad range of cultural, linguistic and historical modules and facilitates an outlet for my diverse interests from Golden Age literature to bullfighting via Spanish popular music from the Transition. In 2016, I relinquished my title as the youngest member of staff when Rebecca Jarman was appointed as lecturer in Latin American studies ensuring, amongst other things, that Hugo Chávez and Pablo Escobar now form part of the curriculum and that I have an ally in my long-term goal for us to one day have a departmental dog (Borges the beagle perhaps?). If it took 38 years for the first Professor to be appointed, I’ll be satisfied if I can have a canine office companion by 2029. In the meantime, our human numbers will be given a welcome boost with the creation of two Cowdray Scholarships (deadline May 1 2018) for MA by Research Degree alongside the imminent arrival of three brilliant Marie-Curie-funded post-doctoral researchers (Massimo Aresu, María Bastianes and Raúl Mínguez), who will work alongside my colleague Gregorio Alonso and myself. It was particularly gratifying to have this unprecedented and, if truth be told, unexpected success with EU funding schemes coincide with our centenary celebrations, which began in Autumn 2017 with Thea Pitman hosting the annual WISPS (Women in Spanish, Portuguese and Latin American Studies) conference, and will end in October with a series of events organised in conjunction with the Instituto Cervantes that include my inaugural lecture as the Chair of Spanish. At the time of writing, we are preparing to host the 63rd annual conference of the Association of Hispanists of Great Britain and Ireland (of which Professor Brown was a founding member) from March 26-28. The challenges now facing our discipline ought not to be underestimated. To claim that the future is necessarily bright for


21 – La Revista – Spring / Summer 2018

modern languages – even for one as popular as Spanish – would be akin to tilting at windmills. In what can sometimes appear to be a uniformly bleak post-Brexit landscape, glimmers of hope nevertheless frequently appear in the guise of the friendships forged and experiences had by both our own students on their term and year abroad (undergraduates reading two languages do both) and incoming Erasmus students. If some of the UK’s most eminent Hispanists (Trevor Dadson and Maria Delgado to name but two) are alumni of Leeds, it is far from quixotic to recognise that our graduates who go on to employ their language skills for a living (e.g. as teachers, translators or foreign correspondents), as well as those whose work ambitions lead them into other fields (be that appearing in Made in Chelsea, performing magic for the Queen or working for the civil service), provide constant testament to the personal and professional benefits of the intercultural dialogue to which the British-Spanish Society is so admirably committed.


22 – La Revista - Spring / Summer 2018


ighty years ago, the first World Cup – or ‘Campeonato Mundial de Fútbol’ as the posters proclaimed – took place in Uruguay. The competition consisted of 13 teams from three confederations, with 18 matches played across three venues. Hosts and favourites Uruguay were the winners, beating Argentina 4-2 in the final in front of a 70,000-strong crowd in Montevideo. It is fair to say the competition has changed a great deal since then. This year’s tournament – the 21st edition – will take place in Russia. There will be 32 teams taking part from five

confederations, more than double the number of nations at the inaugural finals. Some 64 matches will be played across 12 different venues, illustrating just how much international football’s most important event has expanded. The 2018 World Cup will see several firsts. For a start, this is the first time Russia has hosted the tournament. It will also be the first World Cup where video assistant referees (VAR) are used, and the first finals in 80 years without a British referee. Iceland and Panama will be making their debuts in the competition, while Italy have failed to qualify for the first time since 1958.

That means Italy will be the only one of eight sides to have won the World Cup not competing in Russia. Reigning champions Germany are deserved favourites after their extra-time win against Argentina in the 2014 final and their Confederations Cup triumph last year, but it will not be easy for them. It is worth remembering that the last two reigning champions – Italy in South Africa and Spain in Brazil – both crashed out at the group stage. With the World Cup countdown well underway, La Revista has looked at some of the tournament’s mainstays and favourites to see how they will fare in Russia this summer.

Having suffered an embarrassing exit to Iceland in the last 16 of the Euros two years ago after being knocked out at the group stages of the last World Cup, expectations are low for England. They qualified comfortably for the finals, however, finishing top of their group by a distance. Manager Gareth Southgate has instilled a more possession-based style of football, and encouraging displays in recent friendlies against the Netherlands and Italy bode well for the summer. While there may be few experienced options at the manager’s disposal in defence, only three goals conceded in qualification suggests this is not where England’s main problems lie. Southgate has yet to select his firstchoice keeper and gave Jordan Pickford and Jack Butland a game each in the last international break, but both would be excellent choices for the No.1 jersey. It is in attack where England have not been quite as impressive. Raheem Sterling has enjoyed his best season yet for Pep Guardiola’s Man City, but the forward has not yet managed to transfer that form to the national side. Harry Kane is undoubtedly the star man after another prolific season for Spurs, and much will depend on whether he is fully fit. Belgium will pose the biggest challenge in their group, while Panama and Tunisia will hope to bring an element of surprise. Star player: Harry Kane (Spurs) One to watch: Marcus Rashford (Man United)

SPAIN Eight years on from Andrés Iniesta’s World Cup-winning strike in Johannesburg, Vicente del Bosque is gone along with a host of senior players from that allconquering Spain side of 2008-2012. La Roja were dumped out of the group stages in 2014, but this side could herald the start of a new era. Del Bosque’s replacement and former Spain U19, U20 and U21 coach Julen Lopetegui has spoken of the need for evolution rather than revolution, building on existing foundations while restoring attacking ver ve to the team. His side were imperious in qualifying and inflicted Argentina’s joint-worst defeat in a 6-1 friendly mauling at the Wanda Metropolitano while holding their own in a 1-1 draw with Germany. Iniesta will be expected to lead by example, but Real Madrid’s midfield wizard Isco will pull the strings in midfield. He put in a virtuoso performance against Italy in the qualifiers, while dismantling Argentina with a hat-trick – the first to be scored by a Spain player since 2013. Perhaps the only real dilemma for Lopetegui is up front, where Chelsea’s Álvaro Morata has fallen out of favour, although forwards Diego Costa and Rodrigo both demonstrated their credentials in the friendlies against Germany and Argentina. They face a fierce Iberian derby against Por tugal in their group, six years after their last encounter with their neighbours at the semi-finals of Euro 2012. Star player: Isco (Real Madrid) One to watch: Marco Asensio (Real Madrid)

BRAZIL It seems strange to think that five-time World Cup winners Brazil – the only team to have competed in every edition of the tournament – might have something to prove in Russia, yet that is the reality after their 7-1 humbling by Germany in the semifinals last time. Although the spectre of that defeat still lingers, their recent 1-0 friendly win against the reigning world champions in their first meeting since the Mineirazo shows how far they have come. The fact they now look unrecognisable from the team who were humbled in Belo Horizonte is thanks to new boss Tite. The former Corinthians manager has restored Brazil’s confidence in little under 20 games, getting the best out of everyone on the pitch. The Seleccao qualified with ease, finishing 10 points ahead of Uruguay in the South American standings. Much will be expected of Neymar again, especially after his record-breaking move from Barcelona to Paris Saint-Germain, but other players will be just as important. In Marcelo and Dani Alves, Brazil boast perhaps the best pair of full-backs in international football, while Man City’s Gabriel Jesus will be a threat in attack. A lack of strength in depth will worry Tite, but this side has the potential to wipe out those bad memories from four years ago. They will take confidence from their group, which consists of Costa Rica, Switzerland and Serbia, none of whom can be considered World Cup heavyweights. Star player: Neymar (Paris Saint-Germain) One to watch: Gabriel Jesus (Man City)

23 – La Revista – Spring / Summer 2018


ARGENTINA Two-time champions Argentina have finished runners-up in their last three tournament appearances, first to Germany in the 2014 World Cup and twice to Chile in the 2015 and 2016 Copa America finals. Their hopes of breaking that trophy drought rest on Lionel Messi. There is still the assumption that the five-time Ballon d’Or winner needs to win the World Cup to be considered the greatest player of all time, and at 30 years old the likelihood is this is his last chance to silence those doubters at his peak.

24 – La Revista - Spring / Summer 2018

His work will be cut out, however, as this is far from a vintage Argentina side. Jorge Sampaoli’s team struggled in qualifying, and only made it to the finals in third place thanks to a Messi-inspired performance against Ecuador. They recorded a decent 2-0 victory against Italy without their captain, but Messi then watched on from the stands as the Albiceleste were taken apart by Spain, and he alone cannot fix this defence.

There is undoubtedly talent in the side – Paolo Dybala, Sergio Agüero, Gonzalo Higuaín and Ángel di María to name but a few players – but everything flows through Messi. There is not one standout team in Argentina’s group, but Croatia, Iceland and Nigeria are all equally tricky sides who could surprise them. “This is going to be his team,” Sampaoli said of Messi before those friendlies against Italy and Spain. Star player: Lionel Messi (Barcelona) One to watch: Paolo Dybala (Juventus)

PORTUGAL Portugal may have gone out at the group stages in Brazil four years ago, but they are European champions after their shock win against hosts France in 2016. Even at 33, Cristiano Ronaldo remains their main weapon, with 20 goals in 16 games for his country since that tournament and 23 club goals this calendar year so far. They made it to the finals in top spot, but only after a 2-0 win in their final group game against Switzerland, and Fernando Santos’ side are not in the best form coming into the competition. In the recent international break, they clinched a last-gasp 2-1 win against Egypt only to then be beaten 3-0 by the Netherlands, who have not even qualified for Russia.

Despite a loss in form for several key players from the Euro 2016-winning side such as Renato Sanches and André Gomes, however, they have talent to compensate in the likes of Bernardo Silva and André Silva. Their opening match against Spain should provide a good marker of what they can achieve at this year’s tournament. Santos will be hoping his team can be “as simple as doves and wise as serpents” as he said when they won the Euros two years ago. Star player: Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid) One to watch: André Silva (Milan)

Save the Date  

Feria de Abril de Londres 2018 Sevillanas music, dancing, costumes & typical food at Church Hall of Holy Apostles, Pimlico BSS supporting:         A night of literature and wine at the Cañada Blanch Spanish School


Sun 8  April  at  3.00  pm   £15  /  in  advance  £12  +  booking  fee   book  at  


Thu  26  April  at  7.00  pm   BSS  member  £10  /  non  member  £15     with  a  glass  of  wine  and  nibbles       Spanish Modern Masters private guided tour Thur  17  May  at  3.00  pm   with lecturer Paul Pickering at Tate Modern Gallery   BSS  member  £15  /  non  member  £20   Kindly  supported  by:     including  a  hot  drink  &  cake  


    London through Spanish eyes bike ride Sun  10  June  at  11.30  am   Belgravia to Regent’s Park FREE,  bring  your  bike  &  picnic         BritishSpanish Society Summer Reception Thur  28  June  at  6.30  pm   Live music, tapas, jamón, beer, wines & Cava BSS  member  £45  /  non  member  £60   at the Spanish Embassy, Belgravia Kindly  supported  by:  




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25 – La Revista – Spring / Summer 2018





Few players will be followed with more

world, each winning five prestigious Balon

most successful and widely admired

global attention at this summer’s football

D’Or’s and redefining modern football in

football clubs, with an unrivalled record of

World Cup than Cristiano Ronaldo and

the scope of their achievements, breaking

achievement in the Spanish and European

Lionel Messi.

goal scoring records as well as showing

Champions’ League.

The focused one-on-one rivalries that

26 – La Revista - Spring / Summer 2018

dominate other sports like tennis, boxing,

extraordinary physical resilience and sublime skills.

The story of these two players with very different roots and reputations but who

and athletics are virtually unheard of

If arguments rage on over which one

have converged into symbols of football

in football, considered from its early

deserves the title of greatest player of

as a hugely commercial enterprise as well

beginnings as a team game. And yet

the world, it is because neither seems

as popular sport, is a fascinating one.

beyond the natural interest and loyalties

ready to call it a day. Moreover, their

that fans may feel for a particular

contrasting personalities and style of

competing nation in this summer’s

play, have become an iconic rivalry that

tournament, it is the performance of these

is played out in the context of a never-

two football superstars that generates

ending titanic struggle between two of

interest beyond any tribal loyalty or

the world’s greatest football clubs, Real

national boundary.

Madrid and FC Barcelona.

For the last ten years of championship club

It a struggle which itself is fueled by

football, Ronaldo and Messi have shared

a long history of cultural and political

the accolade of best footballer in the

antagonism between Spain’s and Europe’s

Ronaldo, born in the island of Madeira into a poor family, and haunted by a father’s alcoholism, found the motivation to become a top international player, thousands of miles away from home. He started his career with Sporting, Lisbon, then played for Alex Ferguson’s Manchester United, becoming the star of the Premier League, before moving to

Florentino’ Perez’s Real Madrid, where he has confirmed his reputation not just as a preening Adonis, with a huge following on social media, but a precise physical machine that blows teams away with his pace and power. By contrast, Messi was born into a lower middle-class family in the city of Rosario, Argentina, physically so small in size that he was treated with a programme

“Ronaldo, born in the island of Madeira into a poor family, and haunted by a father’s alcoholism... By contrast, Messi was born into a lower middle class family... physically so small in size that he was treated with a programme of growth”

of growth enhancing hormones, so he

Cup in which both players will compete in, and each has much to prove with their national teams. While Ronaldo was credited with inspiring Portugal to their European Championship win in 2016, the World Cup is a crown that has evaded him as it has done Messi. Arguably of the two, it is Messi that has suffered most from his fellow countrymen because of his failure to match the success of the great legend and national

could realise his potential as the most

With Ronaldo, aged 33, and Messi turning

hero Maradona, who is remembered as

gifted player his country had produced

31 this June, both players should by now

having put in on one of the most sublime

since Diego Maradona.

have entered what for most footballers

performances in the history of football

is considered the declining phase of their

when leading Argentina to World Cup

career. In fact, while running less than

victory in Mexico in 1986.

As a young teenager, Messi moved to Barcelona where he has played ever since for the city’s main club, earning a reputation as an introverted, shuffling genius, a man of few words but who speaks volumes through the sheer craft of his football.

they once did, and not so fast, they continue to define games wither scoring brilliant goals, or helping create those scored by others in their team.

Jimmy Burns’ new book “Cristiano & Leo: The Race to Become the Greatest Football Player of All Time” will be published in English language and

And yet this is likely to be the last World

Spanish language editions this May.

The definitive story of the greatest rivalry football has ever seen. Available from all good bookstores

Untitled-1 1

05/04/2018 16:38:12

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ola Manterola, fundadora de CRIS, nos recibe y cuenta en detalle acerca de esta organización anglo-española dedicada exclusivamente a la investigación contra el cáncer. En la actualidad, la Fundación tiene 25.000 socios, un presupuesto anual de 6 millones de euros y financia 4 Unidades de Investigación multidisciplinar, 5 proyectos de oncología infantil, 3 de oncología de adultos y 10 becas de investigación. La Fundación CRIS ha comprometido 15 millones de euros en proyectos de investigación oncológica. En el Reino Unido CRIS Cancer Foundation tiene un acuerdo de colaboración con el Institute of Cancer Research (ICR) y financia 2 proyectos, uno de oncología infantil y otro de adultos y una Unidad multidisciplinar de Inmunoterapia. El ICR es uno de los centros mas importantes de investigación oncológica no solo a nivel Europeo sino también a nivel mundial. ¿Como y cuando nació la fundación Cris? Cris contra el cáncer la fundamos mi marido Diego y yo para dar la misma oportunidad que yo tuve a otros enfermos de cáncer. Yo era una chica joven, madre de dos niños de 5 y 3 años y profesional a punto de mudarme a Londres. Un día empiezo a notar cansancio constante pero pensé que era por mi trabajo dado que me exigía viajar mucho y en los huecos me iba a Londres a buscar casa, colegio para los niños y empezando a sentar bases en un país y una ciudad nueva con mi familia. Recuerdo que fue un primero de agosto el dia en el que el doctor me hizo un análisis para detectar si tenía anemia, sin embargo, diagnosticó: Cáncer, Mieloma Múltiple. Fue triste enterarme que tenía muchos órganos dañados y los riñones a punto de colapsar. Semanas más tarde, me sometieron a una quimioterapia muy fuerte y a un trasplante de médula que alivió el dolor pero lamentablemente, no fue totalmente exitoso. Diego, mi marido, renunció a su puesto de trabajo en Londres, los niños

volvieron al colegio en España y hablaba con ellos por Skype desde mi habitación aislada del Hospital. No lo supe entonces, pero los médicos me daban pocos meses de vida. Después de pensarlo, entré en un proyecto experimental que hoy en día está incorporado al protocolo de tratamiento contra el Mieloma. El Mieloma, no se cura, pero he conseguido una calidad de vida aceptable y estoy muy feliz y agradecida de estar viva. Esta experiencia tan intensa nos impulsó a mi marido y a mí a construir una organización para que personas que estén transitando este camino tan doloroso tengan la posibilidad de tener una segunda oportunidad de vivir. Gracias a la investigación y el apoyo de sponsors creamos la Fundación CRIS contra el cáncer. ¿Por qué el nombre Cris? Inicialmente se llamo en ingles “Cancer Research Innovation Spain” porque estabamos solo en Espana. Hoy en dia somos hispanobritanicos y queremos abrir una sede mas en Francia y queremos llamarla “Cancer Research Institute of Science”. La Fundacion Cris tiene como principal misión la dotación de Fondos para la investigación contra el cáncer en España y el Reino Unido y como tal, buscanmos distintas alternativas para poder atraer a personas y companias dependiendo en que territorio estamos. En Espana hacemos mucha promocion en la calle y tratamos de conseguir cuantos mas socios podammos, en cambio en el Reino Unido, nuestro trabajo se centra en la relacion con las Empresas, los eventos de caridad entre otros. ¿Cuales son los pilares de la Fundacion? La Fundación promueve la investigación de calidad centrándose en tres pilares fundamentales: 1. Favorecer y financiar investigación de

primer nivel con un foco muy importante en la Investigación traslacional. Es aquella investigación con aplicaciones clínicas directas, aquella que pretende trasladar la investigación que realiza en el laboratorio rápidamente al paciente. 2. Favorecer e incentivar la colaboración y transferencia de conocimiento entre los mejores centros de España y el Reino Unido con el objetivo de que nuestros pacientes en España se puedan beneficiar. La Fundación CRIS esta formada por la “Fundación Cris contra el cáncer“ en España y “Cris Cancer Foundation” en el Reino Unido. 3. Favorecer la formación concediendo becas a nuestros investigadores con estancias en centros internacionales de excelencia para adquirir conocimientos que luego beneficien a nuestros pacientes. ¿Es verdad que hay más casos de cánceres que nunca? ¿Por qué? No, no es verdad. La incidencia de cáncer parece haber subido, pero no es a causa de que haya más cáncer que antes. Por un lado el aumento en la esperanza de vida de la población es un factor importante. Cuanto más vivimos, más errores pueden acumular nuestras células, el riesgo de sufrir tumores aumenta con la edad. Por otro lado, las técnicas de diagnóstico no paran de mejorar y gracias a los avances en investigación la esperanza de vida de los pacientes de todos los cánceres no para de aumentar. Hoy en día se consiguen tratar con eficacia el 60% de los cánceres en adultos y el 80% de los infantiles. Por eso es imprescindible la investigación en el desarrollo de las nuevas terapias dirigidas, personalizadas y la inmunoterapia, para conseguir encontrar una cura al cáncer de ese 40% de adultos y 20% de niños.


Trabajáis en el desarrollo de terapias menos agresivas para niños, ¿es difícil investigar este tipo de enfermedades en personas jóvenes? El cáncer infantil debe tratarse de manera diferente que el de adultos. Aunque hoy en día ya se consigue curar casi un 80% de los casos de cáncer infantil, hay un 20% que no responden a las terapias convencionales, y hay que apostar por la investigación para desarrollar tratamientos eficaces para estos casos más difíciles. Este es el objetivo fundamental de la nueva Unidad CRIS de Terapias Avanzadas en Cáncer Infantil, que abrirá sus puertas en breve en el Hospital de la Paz de Madrid. El Cáncer Infantil se considera una enfermedad rara con lo cual generalmente, las farmacéuticas tienen proyectos de investigación que solo invierten en adultos porque niños hay solo unos pocos afectados y no resulta rentable llevar a cabo ensayos clínicos costosos para una cantidad mínima de gente. Eso significa que los niños no pueden tomar los medicamentos que los adultos toman porque no hay sido ensayados en ellos. Fundación Cris quiere corregir y poder solucionar esta problemática. De todos vuestros proyectos, que son muchos, ¿destacarías alguno especialmente? Cada proyecto que apoyamos se centra en un aspecto fundamental del tratamiento del cáncer y tiene una gran relevancia. Sois una Fundación Hispano-británica. Las formas de recaudar son las mismas en España que en el Reino Unido. En España funciona muy bien en cuanto a socios y donantes regulares tanto particulares

como empresas. En cambio, el Reino Unido está muy saturado por entidades de caridad y los fondos no tienden a conseguirse de esa manera. Con lo cual, nos centramos en grandes donantes y empresas. El donante regular es lo que queremos, es lo ideal. Aquella persona o empresa que quiera colaborar con nosotros todos los meses nos da estabilidad financiera dado que nuestros compromisos con las instituciones de investigación son casi siempre a 3 años. Sin embargo, en el Reino Unido, nos funciona más las donaciones “one-off” que es cuando la gente colabora en eventos, subastas y reuniones, pero no tienen un compromiso con nosotros y así, es más probable que si bien los montos son mayores, genera incertidumbre dado que las prioridades de esa persona o empresa pueden cambiar. Un día Tenes el dinero para llevar a cabo tus planes, pero no sabes si contaras con la misma financiación en unos meses. Tenemos que ser proactivos y buscar potenciales colaboradores constantemente. Cuéntanos acerca de la campaña My SuperCris Challenge Consiste en involucrar a todas las personas que quieran demostrar su compromiso de una manera activa en su lucha contra el cáncer. La forma de implicarse es sencilla, hay que seleccionar un reto personal y a través de él, recaudar dinero para financiar dos de nuestros proyectos. El primero oncológico infantil de investigación para ayudar a los niños con tumores cerebrales y el segundo destinado a investigar el cáncer de mama resistente a los tratamientos actuales. Los retos pueden ser de cualquier tipo y condición. Podría ser como poner a prueba tus límites físicos o mentales, superar un miedo personal o simplemente hacer algo divertido a través de lo que puedas recaudar fondos como por ejemplo organizar

una clase de baile, fiesta de disfraces... Lo único que necesitas es: Seleccionar tu reto. Crear tu iniciativa. Comunicar a familiares, amigos y colegas de trabajo y publicarlo en las redes sociales para que todos puedan colaborar. ¿Como te ves en 10 años? Vemos la Fundación mucho más grande y salvando a mucha más gente. Seguiendo respaldando investigaciones sobre todo en niños e implementando inmunoterapia. Queremos conseguir que la Fundación posea un intercambio de conocimiento científico a nivel internacional apoyando a miles de enfermos con ensayos clínicos. Nuestro objetivo es alargar la esperanza de vida y acortar la tasa de mortalidad.

¿Como podemos colaborar? -Haciéndonos socios: El socio, ya sea con donación grande o pequeña es fundamental ya que nos permite financiar a proyectos y ensayos clínicos a largo plazo. Mas información: -Animando a nuestras empresas para que donen anualmente o a través de eventos. En el Reino Unido hay mas de 100 empresas colaborando. -Colaborando recaudando fondos:. Personas maravillosas que prestan su talento, su esfuerzo y su tiempo para organizar eventos deportivos, culturales y sociales. A traves de MySuper Cris todos podemos colaborar.

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¿En qué consiste la inmunoterapia? Nuestro sistema inmunológico cuenta con mecanismos que eliminan eficazmente cualquier célula peligrosa, incluidas las tumorales. En algunos casos, esas células tumorales son capaces de eludir a estas defensas y es cuando establecen un tumor. La inmunoterapia se basa en el uso de tratamientos que actúan sobre mecanismos muy específicos del sistema inmunológico, para que recupere la capacidad de rechazar a los tumores y protegernos de manera duradera. Nuestros investigadores Joaquín Martínez (12 Octubre) y Antonio Pérez (La Paz) ya trabajan intensamente en el desarrollo de estos tratamientos, con fondos CRIS. Pero para conseguir una unidad especializada y de gran alcance este año inauguraremos una Unidad CRIS de Inmunoterapia en el Hospital 12 de Octubre.


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SCAN is the first platform in the UK dedicated at the dissemination and promotion of the work of established contemporary Spanish and Latin American artists globally.

Photo: Adrian Mozzi



t the heart of E2 in London, and hidden down a side road called Herald Street, near Bethnal Green (an area in London where many edgy galleries and artists are based), you will find SCAN, the first space that serves as both exhibition gallery and home for Spanish & Latin American contemporary artists in London. It is 6pm on a Thursday. Pedro Font Alba, one of the four founders of SCAN, is waiting outside the gallery, after having juggled with his agenda and kindly made space to talk to us. He is as inspirations as his project and his words are as well articulated as his art knowledge. Despite being a highly recognised face in the contemporary arts scene in London, he has a laidback and peaceful nature. With a contagious passion, he explains the works of Mauro Vallejo (Madrid, 1981) and Mónica Restrepo (Bogotá, 1982), the artists that form the current exhibition To locate outside the sign, curated by Rafael Barber (Valencia, 1985) (SCAN Project Room, 14th of March to 21st April 2018) and supported by Acción Cultural Española (AC/E). “The current exhibition in the SCAN Project Room has been curated by Rafael Barber and has as its point of departure in Ce’ gamin la (This Boy There), a film by Renaud Victor from 1975, about communities of autistic children at Les Cévennes (France). The exhibition contains work by Mauro Vallejo and Monica Restrepo, artists whose practices research and investigate ways to communicate beyond language. Aligned with Fernand Deligny’s theories, the artworks question language’s validity as a sole form of communication”, Font Alba explains.

“We were dismayed about the very limited presence of Spanish contemporary Art in London, especially young talent, which was not representative of the incredible energy and quality of the work that we were seeing in Spain and Latin America.”

Photo: Pepa Yepes

animated conversation among four architects who shared a love and long-standing interest in Art. We were dismayed about the very limited presence of Spanish contemporary Art in London, especially young talent, which was not representative of the incredible energy and quality of the work that we were seeing in Spain and Latin America. We had already met and talked with many artists, so the SCAN project felt like a natural evolution”, Font Alba says. Nowadays, SCAN is a consolidated proposition with a reputation in Spain and abroad as well as a reference for the internationalization of the Spanish and Latin American culture. “There is a long path ahead. We are constantly engaging with new partners and cultural organisations, at the moment we count with the Spanish Government and also private companies that see value in supporting young talents”, he explains.

“A masterpiece is electric and makes your hairs stand on end. It is scary and beautiful at the same time” Their work directly benefits artists, collectors, gallerists and the interested art-loving public. SCAN injects oxygen into the market by researching and exposing valuable art. They hold a variety of events, competitions, pop-up curated exhibitions, promotions and foster collaboration between artists and spaces. Their next step is to have a larger exhibition space in London. They are also working to expand SCAN to other cities such as New York and Berlin.

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In Vallejo’s exhibition, quotidian objects allow punctuation signs to become tangible. Fascinating minimal pieces made of coins, stones & necklaces represent the hierarchy within each point in a ellipsis, the variable time is poetically explained, hangers show how the question marks have evolved with social media, etc. In Repertorio, Restrepo imagines a lost and ruined language, a language built by objects that inspired gestures and generated forms of communication in an ancient civilization. As no Rosetta stone exists to explain the codes, she touches the objects, clusters them, breaks and reconstructs them, to create a new beautiful vocabulary that can be understood. The Spanish Contemporary Art Network (SCAN) was founded 4 years ago, starting as an online platform and then evolving into a physical space (SCAN Project Room) in 2017. “The project began as a bi-lingual Photo: Adrian Mozzi

A project with Luz Massot, Studio Manager for Angela de la Cruz, which reflects upon the inherent beauty of systems in unable states and the creative potential of networks at vanishing points, is in their pipeline. A Contemporary Photography exhibition will also happen in the space at the end of spring. And the second edition of the SCAN_AR, the artists’ residency program, will happen in summer. SCAN hopes to promote art collection at all levels. “You do not need to be wealthy to own incredible art pieces, and visitors to our exhibitions can testify that”, Font Alba shares with emotion in his eyes. Talking about the differences and similarities between Spanish and Latin American art he thinks they both share common influences such as the language, recent and ancient colonial history, politics and religion; although Latin America is very large and cannot be generalized. “There are strong parallels between the two but art is often local and individual. Latin America has a strong and independent indigenous culture, an artistic and geometric tradition that has beautifully shaped its art”, he explains.

When asking him about what makes a piece a masterpiece, he explains, “A masterpiece is electric and makes your hairs stand on end. It is scary and beautiful at the same time”. Font Alba admires the work of Gillian Wearing, specially Dancing in Peckham (1994) which he sees as anticipating many aspects of our introspective and yet exhibitionist culture. Also, Yves Klein Le saut dans le vide (Leap into the void) which plays with the idea that “seeing is believing”; and Measuring Niagara with a Teaspoon by Cornelia Parker, which he describes as beautiful and sublime. The Spanish Contemporary Art Network is a non-profit foundation. More information can be found here

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Pedro Font Alba (Sevilla, Spain, 1971) London based architect, graduated from the School of Architecture in Seville, Spain. Holds a postgraduate from Bartlett, University College London (UCL). He worked in London and New York and was teaching architecture design at UCL until 2017 – he was responsible for the unit for the past 10 years. He is currently Director at KPF Associates in Covent Garden and one of the four founders of SCAN (Spanish Contemporary Art Network).

Photos on this page courtesy of Adrian Mozzi

COMPROMISO Y APUESTA POR EL FUTURO La principal finalidad de la Fundación Cañada Blanch es el fomento de la cultura y la ayuda a la promoción de los jóvenes estudiantes, la gestión de actividades culturales, con especial dedicación a los avances de la investigación, del pensamiento, del debate social y de las artes, tanto en el ámbito de la Comunidad Valenciana como en el Reino Unido. www.fundacioncañ


The main purposes of the Cañada Blanch Foundation are the promotion of culture; the support of the development of young students; and the management of cultural activities, with a special focus on the advances of research, thought, social debate and the Arts, both in the field of the Valencian Community and in the United Kingdom. www.fundacioncañ





Second from the left: Alvaro Garcia, EFT Systems GMBH

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lvaro García (San Sebastián, 1986) studied Mechanical engineering at TECNUN, Navarra University (San Sebastián, Spain). His first job was for a Danish company in their wind turbine blade research centre in the south of the United Kingdom. Afterwards, he accepted different jobs within the same company in China, Colorado (EEUU) and Denmark. Then he spent four years managing an auto parts manufacturing business in China before returning to the UK. He decided he wanted to go back to work with renewable energies and needed a new challenge. He opened his own company in the UK in 2016, Storing Renewable Energy Ltd, in a partnership with BYD, the world largest manufacturer of lithium ion batteries. García is fully committed to making the electric grid completely

renewable. “Currently renewable energies are cheaper than fossil fuels. If consumers could choose, they would choose the cleaner alternative”, he clarifies. However, it will take a while until we can see this change. Why is that? As with all new sectors, the government is the one that has to give it the first push. Afterwards, big companies join it, then small companies and finally consumers. The product we created in 2015 was meant to make that transition from companies to consumers. We realized that in the foreseeable future, most of the houses in the world will be using batteries at home. Why is the UK Government promoting renewable energies more than the

Spanish Government? It is difficult to find the root causes. In Spain, the sector is heavily regulated and there are no incentives to break the established moulds. In the UK there is a free market, led by six big companies, but there are also many electric companies underneath them trying hard to win clients from them using very creative techniques. The UK Government is trying to create a situation where all these companies can compete on equal terms. Recently, they have been trying to regulate these technologies, but the technology is developing at a rapid rate. That is the only issue that is slowing down the market as a clear regulatory framework is a must. What is happening in Spain? Spain is either waiting to see how the neighboring countries regulate these kind

In what way? Spanish Government has had to pay penalties to foreign companies that had invested in the sector. Granting too many aids made this sector very interesting in the beginning but after a while the government had to stop them because it didn’t have any more money. It is difficult for any government to find a balance, to help the industry without making it too attractive to invest in. In the UK, aids were so good that the number of companies in the sector increased greatly, up to three thousand in 2015. When aids were reduced, suddenly the number dropped below one thousand. However, the good news is that all of them are still active and there are many good companies within the sector. Why are we going to need batteries at home? The main reason is that it will help us to balance the electricity grid, which is not as easy as it sounds. Currently, we need to generate exactly the same amount of electricity that we consume. This causes many problems in the electricity grid and the value of flexibility is very high. There are some plants (hydroelectric, gas plants…) that are used only to offer that flexibility. When there is an error or we consume more than expected, a plant disconnects and we need something

to compensate. The beauty of batteries is that they can introduce energy and also take it away. We expect that in the future there will be many batteries only connected to the grid, not to renewable resources. How would that be beneficial? For example, commercial consumers have to pay more for electricity at specific times, e.g. the evening rush hour. If they used batteries, they could reduce the consumption at those hours and avoid the existence of consumption peaks. The long-term goal is to generate a renewable electricity grid. The only way to achieve this is to introduce enough batteries so they can absorb the variability of a renewable generation. Which of the consumer projects that you developed do you like the most? It was at a semi-detached house in Birmingham, which is not the sunniest city in the world. The client bought the complete system: new panels and a hybrid system inverted (it can connect panels and the battery to the house). They were only two small batteries; we put them in the attic. Just using that system, even during winter, he managed to have a number of days without consuming any electricity from the grid. It is simply amazing, also because the investment wasn’t too high either. He wanted to be able to make a permanent contribution towards a clean environment. He only had 4 KW of solar and 5kwh of batteries. You also won an award with another project that you did? Yes. It was awarded best residential or commercial storage in the UK at the Solar & Storage Live. It was a nursing home in Scotland. They were concerned about power cuts. They were not in a very urban area and power cuts were quite frequent, which was a risk for their residents.

Above: Wales Project. Below: SpainProjectMan-Galicia2

Firstly, they thought about using diesel generators, which are dirty and difficult to manage. Then, one of our clients suggested that they could use a battery that could be used as a reserve energy source. They realized that in investing a little bit more, they could have bigger batteries that could be connected to a photovoltaic system in order to reduce their energy bills. Currently, they use 60% of the battery with the use of the solar panels to reduce their electricity consumption. This enables them to store the other 40% of the electricity generated in the event of an electrical power cut.


Batteries-Wales Project

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of technologies or to be obliged by the EU to change the law. Not much needs to be done. We only require that people change their perception and understand it is possible to install these technologies at home. We also need to promote them in a way that people don’t think we are doing something illegal, the Government is against it or one day the law is going to change. Spain has a bad reputation regarding this after what happened a few years ago. Cutting off aids retrospectively has gravely damaged this sector’s image.




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or nearly thirty years, the British-Spanish Tertulias have provided a valuable

comments at the first session on the Friday, on the subject of ‘What should be

forum for discussing matters of bilateral interest, thereby strengthening

the shape of the UK/Spain relationship in a time of flux for Europe?’.

links between our two nations. These annual gatherings over a weekend,

The launch of the ‘Young Tertulianos’ this year was undoubtedly a timely initiative

alternating each year between the UK and Spain in different cities, are attended

as we head towards Brexit, which makes the need for bilateral fora to encourage

by senior politicians and civil servants from both countries, together with

friendship, collaboration and understanding between the people of our two

members of the business, academic, law and arts communities. Last year, the

countries more pressing than ever. It is also appropriate that this forum was aimed

beautiful city of Bath was the venue for the 29th edition of the Tertulias, with the

at the younger generation of professionals, the majority of whom did not vote

30th set to take place in Malaga later this year. The Tertulias, which are unique

for Brexit, and who are therefore particularly likely to show the will and tenacity

in providing an annual meeting of this nature between the UK and Spain, have

needed to seek to keep up close relations with our European neighbours, in the

long been conducive to forging lasting friendships and deepening the cultural

face of unprecedented challenges.

understanding between our countries.

From the discussions, there undoubtedly emerged a clear sense of regret and

Following the success of the Tertulias, this year has seen the launch of the ‘Young

sadness on the Spanish side that the UK has taken the decision to leave the EU,

Tertulianos’, thanks to the initiative of the current chairs of the Tertulias, Lord

but it was equally clear that Spain’s allegiances are first and foremost to the

Falconer of Thoroton on the British side and Professor José M. de Areilza on the

European Commission and the European project of deeper integration. Brexit

Spanish side, and to the support of the UK Foreign Office and the Spanish Ministry

will inevitably contribute to a shift in power dynamics within the EU which will

of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation. The ‘Young Tertulianos’ aims to build a bridge

see Spain try to position itself to take on a more leading role within the Union,

between the British-Spanish Tertulias and a younger audience that is the latter’s

for it is one of the few member states where all the leading parties – except

future. The inaugural meeting kicked off with a reception on Thursday 15th March,

perhaps for Podemos – are committed to strengthening the EU and deepening

hosted by the Spanish Ambassador at his residence in London, with welcoming

the Eurozone towards a fiscal union. The onus will therefore be very much on the

remarks from Sir Alan Duncan, UK Minister for Europe and the Americas, and

UK government to find reasons to make working with the UK on the global stage

Jorge Toledo, Spanish Secretary of State for European Affairs. This was followed

an enticing strategic addition for Spain in the post-Brexit era.

by a morning of discussion sessions on Friday 16th March at the London offices

While the exact shape Brexit will take remains a million-dollar question at the

of Wayra, Telefónica’s startup accelerator.

time of writing this in March 2018, Theresa May and her government have ruled

The event brought together British and Spanish professionals in their twenties

out a so-called ‘soft’ Brexit, with the UK retaining access to the single market, as

and thirties from a diverse range of fields including law, business, politics and

well as existing EFTA-style models for trade agreements between non-member

government, the arts and academia, all of whom have different interests in

states and the EU. Instead, they are seeking a bespoke deal for trade and services

fostering good relations between the UK and Spain. I had the pleasure of being

that will create as ‘frictionless’ a border as possible between the UK and the

invited and, together with Belén Becerril, Deputy Director of the Institute of

EU. The extent to which this will prove feasible remains unknown, but it is in the

European Studies at CEU San Pablo University, I was asked to provide opening

interests of both the UK and Spain that the UK secures a comprehensive trade


between the UK and Spain. Beyond government-to-government, sector-to-sector or company-to-company initiatives, a recurring theme throughout the discussions was the importance of cultivating peopleto-people relations, the enduring importance of which cannot be underestimated. Here, a key consideration was the difficult task of finding ways to make embracing cultures and learning languages become a priority in UK schools, as part of a wider need to make sure that such activities – and their benefits – are not reserved purely to the elites and middle classes, as is so often the case in Britain today. A recent British Council ‘Languages for the Future’ report highlighted that Spanish will be the language that British people most need post-Brexit, even more than Chinese, and we need to make sure we equip the future working generations appropriately. Beyond the ability to speak another language, the appreciation that language-learning also encourages of cultural nuance and richness is fundamentally important – and puts paid to the faulty ‘everyone speaks English’ argument. In regard to cultural activities, it was suggested that there should be a focus on what we have in common and the cultural values we share, rather than on exoticising the ‘other’, in order to build affective links and understanding. The sizeable Spanish diaspora in the UK and British diaspora in Spain – particularly that of the working age population – provide significant scope to seek to enhance bilateral engagement in the highly skilled industries on which the future prosperity of both our countries depends significantly. Britain is home to around 5000 Spanish scientists according to recent estimates, and the UK Science and Innovation network has also run a number of bilateral initiatives in Spain through the British Embassy in Madrid in a bid to open up opportunities for collaboration. Many of these have resulted in concrete investments by Spanish companies in the UK and vice versa. Not just science, but other industrial and technological R&D activities are important to take into account here, and it is the business sector that is the largest R&D investor in Spain, with top Spanish companies investing heavily in R&D activities. It is fitting in this regard that the inaugural ‘Young Tertulianos’ event took place at the London offices of Wayra, which provides significant funding and mentoring opportunities to the most promising ICT startups across a range of countries in which Telefónica operates. The mutual benefits of young British and Spanish professionals collaborating in such highly skilled industries to produce the best ideas, and having access to different funding opportunities in each other’s countries, are clear to see. This came to the fore in the second discussion session on the agenda, on the subject of ‘The changing face of work

and trust in each other’s institutions. Spain has a sizeable bilateral trade surplus with the UK, since it exports far more to the UK than it imports from it, and the UK is currently the top destination for Spanish investment, while the UK is the second largest investor in Spain (after the US). Beyond this, participants raised the crucial need to address Brexit through the lens of the technological revolution, thinking not only of the movement of goods and services but also of data. Government legislation on issues such as data protection has not been able to keep up with the speed of the technological advances which are immune to borders, and addressing shared challenges in this area will remain vital. In terms of government-to-government relations, the historic state visit of King Felipe and Queen Letizia of Spain to the UK in July 2017 – the first since that of former King Juan Carlos in 1986 – has given a new impetus to bilateral relations between our two countries. It was a fitting tribute to the closeness of our countries’ relations in business and innovation that the King addressed the UK-Spain Business Forum during the visit and that he and Queen Letizia also met with a delegation of Spanish scientists working at the Francis Crick Institute, a biomedical research centre in London. The British Embassy in Madrid has long been undertaking work to identity areas of common ground where there is scope for British-Spanish economic cooperation in spheres such as green growth, climate change and smart sustainable cities. Since the Brexit vote, this has become even more imperative, and bilateral engagement with EU countries in such spheres now features within the FCO’s prosperity agenda to foster global economic growth. Participants in the ‘Young Tertulianos’ event considered the role that grassroots company-to-company and sector-tosector initiatives could play in developing – and indeed complementing – such opportunities to exploit potential synergies and common interests

and technology’. Ideas were shared and discussed on the opportunities and challenges that the technological revolution has posed to the world of work and how it will shape the jobs of the future. Topics raised included the balance between automation and human experience, as well as the need for companies to marry responsibility with demand, for sometimes companies have to give clients a poorer version of what they want in order to keep them safe from sophisticated cyber-attacks and even terrorism. Other questions debated included the challenge the public sector faces as citizens increasingly expect the same digital experience from government departments as they would from the private sector, which raises various dilemmas – for example, while private companies generally acknowledge and accept that the failure of certain initiatives is inevitable in order ultimately to make significant advances, the public sector has to be much warier given that it is funded by taxpayers. Concern was also expressed that the technological revolution risks increasing wealth inequality by widening the gap between those able to innovate and those unable to do so, provoking reflections on how technology can be used instead to reduce inequality rather than to exacerbate it. Overall, the two-day event was a wonderful chance for invitees to share creative ideas on mutual challenges and begin to form new friendships, factors which will never be able to be automated. The discussions, mirroring the nature of the longstanding ‘senior’ Tertulias, were held under the Chatham House Rule and in a relaxed and informal atmosphere, and as a result were stimulating and very informative. The discussions also benefitted from the wide range of sectors and experiences represented among invitees, from those working in business and technology to those in the humanities and social sciences. Thanks are due to the chairmen of the Tertulias for the initiative and to all those who supported the event and its organisation.

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agreement that is as free as possible, involving regulatory alignment

38 – La Revista - Spring / Summer 2018




One more year, the awaited Motion Picture Academy’s awards ceremony

Nico Casal, the Spanish composer of Stutterer, film by English director Ben

arrives, broadcasted live from the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, the legendary

Cleary that won an Oscar for Best Short Film two years ago (2016), remembers

auditorium that has hosted the Oscars since 2001.

the night at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood with the film crew, when their

For the past 5 years, the Academy also hosts live Oscars viewing parties in New York and London for its members and selected film industry guests, involved with nominated movies. The British Spanish Society attended the Academy’s soiree in London, at the iconic Soho’s Ham Yard Hotel and talked to Spanish, Latin American & UK film industry members.

name was called to the stage to collect the Oscar… “Still feels so unreal. I had the pleasure of talking to Thomas Newman and his wife at the Dolby Theatre right before the ceremony. Thomas Newman is one my favourite composers (American Beauty, Finding Nemo, Road to Perdition) and the fact that I could wish him luck that night (he was one of the nominees!) was just amazing”, Casal shares.

The Oscars is the oldest entertainment awards ceremony, first held on May 16, 1929, as a private dinner at the classic Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, which is located next to the walk of fame. Montserrat Roig de Puig is one of the few Spanish actors that can proudly say she stayed there for a week, during Pioneer Animator from Argentina. “It was magical, it strangely felt like… home. Apparently, the spirit of Marilyn Monroe still lives at the hotel”, the actress explains with a cheeky look, making a lovely sound with her antique coins’ bracelet, inhereted from her grandmother, whilst she sips a bit of her expresso martini (these coffee cocktails are traditionally served at the Oscar’s night). NICOLAS CASAL

39 – La Revista – Spring / Summer 2018

the US premiere of Quirino Cristiani’s documentary, an untold story of the

Sofia Serbin de Skalon, founder of the London

films”, the London Argentine Film Festival founder

Argentine Film Festival, explains the moment

explains. “We are seeing a greater number of well-

when Gael García Bernal sang the film lyrics was

crafted and original stories being produced and

key. “If you think that we went from Disney trying

distributed and a shift away from the view of Latin

to trademark the name “Día de los muertos” to

American cinema as just one type of film. It was

collaborating with some of the film´s most vocal

really fantastic to see Chile take home the Best

critics and then Coco going on to become the

Foreign Language Film Oscar; the second Latin

biggest box-office hit in Mexican history, it is huge”,

American country to have won the award along with

Serbin de Skalon explains.

Argentina”, she winks. “It is nice to see unknown

When talking about the future in the film industry, co-production is seen by most as the only way forward. “Ever y year I go to Cannes and to other film festivals and I feel that independent This year’s Oscars did not bring many surprises. “Everyone I thought would win, won, there were really amazing films this year but the Brit Gary Oldman (Best Actor for his epic portrayal of Winston Churchill in The Darkest Hour) and Coco (Best Animated Feature Film, about the Mexican Day of the Dead) were favourites from the beggining”, Roig de Puig explains. Latin American films made a big splash –quite literally- this year. Mexico’s Guillermo del Toro won Best Director and his The Shape of Water took the top honour for Best Film, with British actress Sally Hawkins, Best Picture and Best Soundtrack. “Alexandre Desplat’s amazing composition emphasises the fantasy side of the story in a very remarkable way”, Casal points out.

productions have it tougher and tougher. I believe that the only way to produce original work is by doing co-production”, Roig de Puig says. “I feel that producers at the moment have lots of power and sometimes can override the director’s choices in favour of not taking risks. Playing it too safe can produce predictable results and loose boldness.

actors in the screen, this year’s Chilean film is a great example. If you think about English movies, Brief Encounter was given to totally unknown actors and the film became very powerful, a cult film. The script and acting are superb, and it was giving the right message to the audience at that time. Acting is not about followers and box offices, it is something else, a fine combination of a very good script, great actors for the part, fabulous crew… et voilà! the magic it is served”, Roig de Puig adds.

Often directors are not allowed to choose their preferred actors, in favour of the bankable ones”. This year, Catalan-language drama film, Summer 1993, by Carla Simon was chosen by the Spanish Film Academy to represent the country in the foreign language category in the run up to the Oscars. “It is a pity that it did not make it to the Oscars, it has one of the best performances of very young children I have ever seen on a film”, Roig de Puig shares. “It touches a subject that is really difficult to tackle -the lost of your parents at an early age-. The two little girl’s acting, Frida

Montserrat Roig de Puig

(Laia Artigas) and Anna (Paula Robles), endorsed by Esteve (David Verdaguer) and Marga (Bruna Cusi) is superb but also the sensitivity with which the story is told, you can tell that it is very close to the director’s heart as this is what happened to her when she was a child”, Roig de Puig adds.

Director Guillermo del Toro

The Oscar for Best Song went to Remember me,

David Verdaguer (Girona, Spain) Goya Award for Best New Actor (2018) for the Oscar’s nominated film Summer 1993, directed by Carla Simon. Gaudi Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role (2018) for the film Anchor & Hope, directed by Carlos Marques--Marcet (2017) and shot in London.

from the film Coco. “Although I am a big fan of Sufjan Stevens, Remember me was a clear winner. The scene at the end when the kid plays that song to her grandma made me very emotional”, Casal explains. Mexican actor Gael García Bernal, voiced the character Héctor in both the Spanish and English versions. Rita Moreno and Sebastian Lelio

Latin American artists took home some of the most desired Oscars this time. Sebastian Lelio’s 40 – La Revista - Spring / Summer 2018

drama, A Fantastic Woman, won the Best Foreign Language Film. This is a historical milestone, not only because it is the first-ever Chilean film to win an Oscar but also because it made a breakthrough in transgender cinema. Its lead actress Daniela Vega became the first openly transgender woman to present at the ceremony. “The win for Chile represents the heightened recognition that Latin American films and filmmakers are enjoying across Composers Kristen Anderson-Lopez (L) and Robert Lopez from ‘Coco,’

Montserrat Roig de Puig (Portbou, Spain) London-based actress from Spain who has won five awards for her role in Meeting with Sarah Jessica by Vicente Villanueva. Works in cinema, theatre and TV in Spain, France, Italy & London. Recently defined by the Evening Standard as “imperious, sexy and snake-hipped, she exudes a darkly erotic charge, and a sense of mortal fear is powerfully felt”

the industry and not just for big budget commercial

Sofia Serbin de Skalon (Buenos Aires, Argentina) Founded the London Argentine Film Festival in 2012 in partnership with Picturehouse Cinemas with 5 editions to date. Creative Director at Celluloid Circus, a London based film marketing and distribution company specialising in Latin American films. Nico Casal (Santiago de Compostela, Spain) London & Madrid based film composer originally from Galicia in Spain. Composed for many feature films and short films including the winner of the Best Short Film at the 2016 Oscars, Stutterer. Currently working on his fifth feature film, La Enfermedad del Domingo, by Ramón Salazar as well as his debut EP.

41 – La Revista – Spring / Summer 2018

We are Codorníu. Since 1551


undación Banco Sabadell has reached an agreement with the BritishSpanish

Applicants may be undergraduates in their final year, or be postgraduates seeking,

Society to support the British charity’s scholarship programme for Spanish

for example, to extend existing qualifications or to carry forward research already

and British post graduates, hopefully with comments from both sides.


“I am delighted that our charity has reached agreement with such a prestigious

Candidates should already have been unconditionally accepted at the University

corporate institution to supporting a programme which breaks walls down

of their choice and be able to provide written confirmation of this (a scanned copy

between our societies and our universities in important fields of research and

of your acceptance letter will suffice).

investigation, “said BSS chairman Jimmy Burns Marañón. Under the agreement the Fundación Banco Sabadell will become the latest institution to become a supporter of the BSS annual scholarship programme, which provides financial assistance to postgraduate British and Spanish students studying in UK and Spanish Universities.

would not be possible without this additional funding. In considering applications the Council will take into account whether they conform with the objectives of the Society, which is a non-political organisation whose aim is: ‘to promote friendship and understanding among the peoples of the United

This year marks the 10th anniversary of our scholarship programme

Kingdom and Spain through knowledge of each other’s customs, institutions,

so it is a huge symbolic moment for Sabadell to show their support.

history and way of life’.

We are hugely grateful to them.

Details of the benefactors that very generously support our programme can be

“Desde la Fundación Banco Sabadell apoyamos la investigación científica a través de

found on the British Spanish Society website. Their representatives will be involved

nuestros premios en el sector de la biomédica, ciencias e ingeniería, en programas

in the selection of awardees.

de becas con diferentes universidades de toda España pero también colaborando con programas que fomentan la investigación como los que impulsa la British Spanish Society. Es una muy buena noticia anunciar nuestra nueva colaboración con esta institución del Reino Unido, mostrando así nuestro compromiso con la excelencia y la ciencia.” 42 – La Revista - Spring / Summer 2018

The Society’s aim is to provide support for a course or research project which

Applicants for the programme are United Kingdom or Spanish nationals who are or will be engaged in university studies at postgraduate level that have some connection with bilateral links and relationships between the United Kingdom and Spain in any field of academic interest.

Grants made possible by the support we get provide allowances for research materials, travel, academic fees and, where appropriate, accommodation. Additional info attached and also on our website -link to scholarships). Other supporting institutions are Santander Universities, BBVA, Telefonica, Mahou, and Plastic Energy.

REAL ESTATE - LAWYERS LANDERER & MANZANERA Lánderer&Manzanera was founded to help British companies and individuals to invest in Spain. This Spanish conglomerate offers assistance particularly on real-estate as well as commercial activities associated to it. On the back of very successful trajectories, Javier Lánderer (Real Estate expert) and Isidoro Manzanera (Lawyer) decided to join forces to offer an integrated service customised for each client. This way, it is now easy to invest in Spain. Companies, institutions and people are now able to develop their business quickly and more effectively. What are the services Lánderer&Manzanera provide? Lánderer&Manzanera are experts on the Spanish market specifically in places such as Costa Blanca, Valencia, Palma de Mallorca, Menorca, Ibiza and Formentera. The business potential for these areas is huge as nationals and international investors take more interest in these beach destinations. Spanish market is moving faster than ever. We offered services for real estate investments such as hotels, touristic apartments, residences and any type of commercial activities related to the opening of a

business (commerce, franchise, commercial centre, restaurant and so on) in Spain as well as Montecarlo, La Provenza and Saint Tropez. We provide the best solutions on real estate; financial consulting and asset management as well as legal, business, tax and civil advice. What differentiates L&M from other company? Lánderer&Manzanera ensures that solutions are suitable to the needs of each client. We believe that people and companies are unique, and commercial needs are different case by case. In addition to this, this is a transparent and professional organization that mainly focuses on building trust by maintaining the confidentiality and sensitivity of any topics discussed. Building long-lasting relationships and setting high standards of quality in everything we do is our motto. Lánderer&Manzanera supports the British Spanish Society to continue fostering the cultural exchange between Spain and United Kingdom and contributes to the cross-education of young members which are the most valuable asset and those who will shape the future

43 – La Revista – Spring / Summer 2018

How was the society founded and what is its mission?



Instituto Cervantes en colaboración con el BritishSpanish Society lanza su ciclo Blanco White el 27 de Febrero.


l Instituto Cervantes lanza su Ciclo Blanco White de temas hispanobritánicos reviviendo, en un acto que contó con la colaboración del BritishSpanish Society la historia del British Council en Madrid de los ’40 y el Instituto Español Republicano y el Instituto de España durante la misma época en Londres,

44 – La Revista - Spring / Summer 2018

“La ciudad de Sevilla le agradece una vida dedicada a combatir la intolerancia”. El 12 de marzo de 1984, la Diputación de Sevilla homenajeó a José María Blanco White (Sevilla, 1775 - Liverpool, 1841) con el descubrimiento de un mosaico en la calle donde nació el poeta. Blanco White dedicó toda una vida a luchar contra el fanatismo político y religioso. Se tuvo que marchar de España porque se le iba a ejecutar, y acabó en el exilio en el Reino Unido, donde también terminaría por sufrir. El Instituto Cervantes de Londres inauguró el pasado 27 de febrero de 2018 el ciclo Blanco White, con el que se propone hablar sobre momentos y personajes de la historia de España y el Reino Unido. Fueron dos mujeres sevillanas quienes participaron en el primer coloquio, titulado “MadridLondres, 1940s. Cultura, diplomacia y espionaje”. Eva Díaz Pérez, periodista cultural y escritora, finalista del premio Nadal con El club de la memoria y Marina Pérez de Arcos, profesora en la London School of Economics y coordinadora de Spanish Studies en Oxford. También asistió y cerró la ponencia Jimmy Burns Marañón, presidente de la BritishSpanish Society. Ignacio Peyró, director del Instituto Cervantes en Londres, explicó que el ciclo Blanco White servirá para “fortalecer los lazos” entre el Reino Unido y España. Además, señaló que pocas personas llevan tan bien impresa en su nombre “la huella hispanobritánica” como el poeta José María Blanco White. Después pasó a hablar de los años 1940 y de los tiempos desgraciados que ambos países afrontaron. Como nota positiva apuntó que “muchos de los casi 50.000 libros que se acumulan en la biblioteca del Cervantes se consiguieron en aquella época en Londres”.

De Starkie a Baroja Peyró dio paso a Marina Pérez de Arcos, quien contó la historia y la labor del British Council en Madrid durante los años de la posguerra, tema investigado gracias a la beca Santander concedida por el BritishSpanish Society. El British Council, instalado en la madrileña calle de Méndez Núñez, se inauguró en el verano de 1940, misma fecha en la que Alemania había invadido Francia. Su fundador, Walter Starkie, contribuyó a ayudar a perseguidos españoles por el régimen franquista a través de rutas de escape clandestinas. Además, Walter Starkie creó una atmósfera propicia para las relaciones hispanobritánicas con tertulias, presentaciones o promociones de libros ingleses. En una tarde uno podía encontrarse con artistas y escritores tan distinguidos como Pío Baroja, Camilo José Cela, Joaquín Rodrigo o Ignacio Zuloaga. Por su parte, Eva Díaz narró la disputa cultural que existió en el Londres de los años 1940, después de la Guerra Civil, entre el Instituto Español (el republicano) y el Instituto de España (el franquista). Los republicanos, aun habiendo perdido la guerra, lucharon por mantener la sede abierta en Londres. El Instituto Español tenía como objetivos “difundir en la sociedad británica un conocimiento más amplio y profundo de los diversos aspectos de la vida española presente y pasada”. Eva Díaz mencionó a escritores ilustres que participaron como ponentes, tales como Arturo Barea, Luis Cernuda, Victoria Kent o Pablo de Azcárate. Terminó su discurso con una cita a Américo Castro, historiador español que se refirió así al exilio español: “Contemplando a España desde lejos y en la profundidad de sus siglos, he aprendido que es falso que haya dos Españas. La dualidad de que se habla es resultado de un espejismo,

de un delirio siniestro, en el que el asesinado pretende asesinar a su doble y en realidad se suicida. Cada uno mata en el otro al perverso y al inútil que lleva en sus entrañas”. Por su parte, Jimmy Burns Marañón, autor de la aclamada novela Papa espía, rememoró las reuniones de exiliados españoles intelectuales que se produjeron en la casa de sus padres, Tom Burns y Mabel Marañón en Londres durante los años de la posguerra. Algunos de los asistentes asintieron y se emocionaron, ya que ellos mismos habían estado presentes en aquellas asambleas. Blanco White, enfrentado contra todo cerrilismo, escribió: “Los que tenéis raíces en el suelo / Nunca podéis dejar paz en el suelo”. De igual forma, Jimmy Burns terminó la conferencia entre aplausos haciendo un llamamiento por mantener las buenas relaciones entre España y Reino Unido, dos casas distintas pero igualmente acogedoras.

ace unos días se celebró en la sede del Instituto Cervantes de Londres la apertura del ciclo de conferencias sobre relaciones hispano-británicas. El acto lo organizaban el propio Instituto respondiendo al propósito de Ignacio Peyró, su nuevo director, de otorgarle mayor dinamismo y presencia pública, y la BritishSpanish Society, para cuyo presidente, Jimmy Burns, el acto tenía un especial significado teniendo en cuenta el título del evento y la polifacética vida de su padre, el editor, escritor y espía Tom Burns. Eva Díaz Pérez, con quien compartí la responsabilidad de inaugurar el ciclo, realizó una emocionante y poética exposición sobre el Instituto de España y el Instituto Español en Londres, mientras que yo lo hice sobre Walter Starkie y la instauración del British Council en Madrid. El acto resultó tan concurrido que la sala resultó pequeña y, por ello, no todos cuantos quisieron asistir lograron hacerlo.

Entre las muchas facetas del profesor Starkie, primer catedrático de español en Trinity College Dublín y traductor de Jacinto Benavente y El Quijote, estuvo la de instaurar el British Council en España. Starkie llegó a Madrid en julio de 1940, al poco tiempo de la caída de Francia ante las tropas nazis, con una misión patriótica. Desarrolló tres actividades legales diferentes: la creación de un colegio para niños, un club social hispano-británico y una academia para enseñar inglés al público en general. El colegio sigue existiendo y es el único que tiene el British Council en el mundo. Como el propio Starkie escribiría en uno de sus informes, “we are shock-troops in the war of ideas”. Porque el British Council en Madrid, también sirvió de apoyo al Servicio de Inteligencia británico y a las actividades diplomáticas oficiales encaminadas a contrarrestar la poderosa influencia que Alemania e Italia ejercían sobre España en aquellos difíciles tiempos.

Fue muy emocionante y, desde luego, un honor para mí co-iniciar el ciclo Blanco-White. Como coordinadora de Spanish Studies en la Universidad de Oxford, miembro del Comité Ejecutivo de la BritishSpanish Society y española residente en el Reino Unido desde hace ya más de una década, me siento comprometida con el propósito de cooperar en el fortalecimiento de los lazos de amistad entre ambos países. Mientras el evento empezaba, me acordé, como en otras ocasiones similares, del personaje de Isabel en La española inglesa, una de las doce novelas cortas que componen las Novelas ejemplares, una andaluza de quien dice Cervantes ‘y aunque iba aprendiendo la lengua inglesa, no perdía la española… Desta manera, sin olvidar la suya, como está dicho, hablaba la lengua inglesa como si hubiera nacido en Londres’. También me sentía feliz de ser sevillana y compartir con Eva, igualmente sevillana, abrir el ciclo bajo el nombre de otro sevillano, en este caso ilustre, José María Blanco-White, que representa genuinamente el puente literario y vivencial entre las dos orillas que muchos de nosotros imaginamos de un mismo río de historia, intereses y creencias, que al igual que separa e identifica los márgenes, los junta y unifica.

La investigación realizada sobre ello, financiada por la beca Santander y otorgada por la BritishSpanish Society en su primer centenario, que llevé a cabo mientras terminaba mi tesis doctoral en Relaciones Internacionales en Oxford, y el relato histórico que de ello se ha extraído, están fundamentados en material británico consultado en la Bodleian Library de Oxford y en los archivos de la RAE, también en los archivos del duque de Alba, gran amigo del fundador del British Council, y otros fondos documentales encontrados en la UCLA (Universidad de California en Los Ángeles). La actuación de Starkie, y las de otros menos conocidos, como Eduardo Martínez Alonso o Margarita Taylor, no solo sentaron las bases de una institución que con el paso del tiempo ha creado una identidad propia, sino que también, de manera arriesgada y clandestina, contribuyeron a salvar no pocas vidas de perseguidos por los nazis buscándoles vías de escape.

Fui repasando más vínculos que me unían, de alguna forma, a la figura que da nombre a la serie. Blanco-White compartía una profunda amistad con personajes relevantes relacionados con mi college en la Universidad de Oxford como, por ejemplo, el teólogo reformista Edward B. Pusey. Adicionalmente, Blanco-White y el profesor Walter Starkie, sobre el que centré mi intervención en la sesión inaugural, tienen también rasgos en común. Ambos eran grandes aficionados a la música y tocaban el violín con bastante destreza, eran católicos (o al menos durante un tiempo en el caso de Blanco-White) con experiencias vitales intensas vividas en Irlanda, Inglaterra y España, y emplearon tanto el español como el inglés para desempeñar sus actividades y desarrollar sus respectivas obras, frutos referenciales de sus apasionantes vidas.

Estudiantes universitarios, miembros de las dos ramas de la gran familia de la BritishSpanish Society, representantes de la Embajada española en Londres y personal de la administración británica en Whitehall, nos acompañaron en una tarde que, aunque de hielo y nieve en Londres, fue de intensa y cálida emoción y, desde luego, de un gran estímulo en el propósito de fortalecer de lazos de entendimiento y de cooperación entre el Reino Unido y España. A nuestros dos protagonistas, sin duda, les hubiera gustado que así fuera. Y al universal Cervantes, también. Dr Marina Pérez de Arcos teaches at the LSE and at the University of Oxford, where she studied and earned her DPhil in International Relations. She was the BritishSpanish Society’s Santander scholar and has been a G20 advisor at the Spanish Presidency. She is co-founder and Director of the Oxford Spanish Play, the first theatre company to perform in Spanish at Oxford, and Spanish Studies at Oxford Coordinator at the University of Oxford.

45 – La Revista – Spring / Summer 2018



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When I moved to Madrid in 1991, I was really much more interested in Goya. I had visited the Prado 10 years before and inevitably it had been Goya´s Black paintings that had taken my breath away. Spontaneous drawing with paint and colour, this for me was how to instill a painting with a life of its own. Goya himself had also seen this in Velazquez´s later brushwork, as had Manet and Degas later on. Bacon had especially admired Velázquez´s ability to choose and to know what to leave out. Here we are in the 21st century, and somewhere in all this, is a tradition that´s going to show the way for some new kind of painting. Las Meninas wouldn´t be my first choice as a starting point in fact. It´s been tried too many times, and mostly at the expense of the original in a way. But it does present a unique opportunity. Circumstances have permitted me to return to the exact place and point in time, and go through the process of production of a parallel work from the beginning to the end. The room in the Real Alcázar which we see behind the Infanta Margarita actually existed and as we still have the architectural drawings, we see that it is faithfully and topographically reproduced. Thus the space can be recreated from any angle, not necessarily the angle chosen by Velázquez, but from another if necessary.

The light enters the room through 7 vast 4 meter high casement windows, and one of these I had to build to serve as a kind of lighting prop. In my book HOSPITAL-PALACE, Un pintor responde a Diego Velázquez. I explain in depth all the things that I found out, the preparation and techniques used, and how I produced a series of paintings that led me along a parallel path to the one taken by Velázquez in 1656. To cut a long story short, in my works, the old Real Alcázar of Madrid, which was actually burnt down in 1734, has been appropriated as a hospital or refuge in modern times, rather as Madresfield Castle is described in Brideshead Revisited. I am often asked... But why a hospital? And for me that´s the most interesting part of this idea. The hospital atmosphere could be profoundly moving, silent and passive, and emphasises the fragility and transience of life, the very essence of our being. Today when I look at Las Meninas, I think to myself, what am I looking at? And my conclusion is that its power lies in its clarity, there are no hidden secrets, for which so many writers have craved. The Infanta Margarita had been painted 6 or 7 times before the age of 12. Each work requiring fairly long sittings, and the simplest explanation for the mysterious group, is that they are humouring her, keeping her still long enough for the painter to get something done. The extra figures would not be included in the official portrait, but necessary nevertheless for its production. Most of these portraits were immediately sent to Vienna where there are still. The group scene or something similar would have been regularly witnessed. At some point, at one of these sittings, Velazquez or even the King or the Queen might have thought, paint me that,all of you together, a private painting for us. The truth is that there is no official commission for this work, it was hung in the King´s small private office, and it was not exhibited in public until 160 years later when the Prado was opened in 1819. Moreover its original title was La Familia de Felipe IV. In my book I describe how the painting is site-specific, meaning that the canvas size and proportions were carefully decided at the start, and that there would be an element of Tromp l óeil in its final hanging.

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eeting Velázquez for a glass of wine, what would that have been like? Would he arrive late, would he be a good listener? Would it be the kind of conversation that one would enjoy, participate in and learn from? Or would he be name dropping and egocentric. We just don´t know. One can read everything published about him to date, and still only have a vague picture of the person, the court official or the family man. Even the supposed self-portraits are not especially revealing to me, although it’s good to know what he might have looked like. There are very few letters, and even fewer drawings, but we do have his paintings, and for the last 10 years I have been drawing and painting a way to unearth something about the private Diego. By metaphorically peeling away the layers of decisions, changes and choices seen behind the surface of his works, one might be able to get a feeling at least.

The physical difficulties of working on a canvas of these proportions have made me feel closer to the great painter. The challenge of proportioning figures in space, the composition, the mixing and layering of colour, and his masterly final touches, have all brought with them their revelations, as I had hoped, and I am still working on a final version.

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There is a sequel to this ongoing project, and that is that during my reading, I came across another way to get into Velázquez´s mind set. When the Real Alcázar was burnt down over 500 works of art were destroyed, these included many important pieces by Titian, Tintoretto, Rubens, and Velázquez. Of the series of 4 mythological scenes by Velázquez, which had been hanging in the Hall of Mirrors, only Mercury and Argos was saved from the flames. Today it is hanging in the Prado, and although it has suffered alterations and additions, it is still considered one of this great artist’s most interesting late works. We know from the late 17th century Royal Inventories, that the three lost paintings were depictions of Venus and Adonis, Apollo and Marsyus, and Psyche and Cupid. Thanks also to these inventories we have a good idea of the canvas size too, and more or less how they had been hung. Although we have no idea how they looked.

HOSPITAL-PALACE BOOK My idea here has been to produce these three lost tales from Ovid, following the treatment of the surviving Mercury and Argos, in mood light and technique. There is an atmosphere of suspense, premeditating the action which gives Mercury and Argos its tension, and this I have also tried to maintain in different ways. It was interesting to have to decide which moment from each story Velázquez would have chosen, and here I have opted for the unity of couples in landscape. The 2 violent central scenes flanked by the death of Adonis on the left, and the resurrection of Psyche on the right. I imagine the four paintings, each with its couple painted to the same scale, stretching frieze-like at eyelevel above Bonucelli´s famous lion tables, all the way down the south wall of the great state room.


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l desgaste dental es un fenómeno cada vez más presente en la mayoría de las personas. En la actualidad, este fenómeno está aumentando debido a cambios en los hábitos dietéticos y en las tendencias que fomentan un mínimo peso corporal. En el Reino Unido se estima que más del 30 % de los adultos padecen erosión dental. El empleo de rodajas de limón en el agua que bebemos, las bebidas carbonatadas (aunque sean light), los zumos de frutas, etc. provocan un medio oral ácido que conduce al desgaste del esmalte dental. Es esencial llevar una dieta sana y equilibrada para preservar la salud de tu boca, pero no suficiente. Los alimentos que comemos y bebemos tienen un impacto directo en la salud de nuestros dientes. Un estudio reciente, llevado a cabo en la Unidad de Odontología del King’s College London, mostró que los más afectados por la erosión no eran aquellos que simplemente consumían bebidas o alimentos ácidos, sino los que lo hacían entre comidas. Las personas que tomaban refrescos o té con sabor a fruta dos veces al día tenían 11 veces más probabilidades de tener una erosión severa que aquellos que no lo hicieron. El esmalte es la barrera externa del diente y está diseñado para resistir las agresiones y condiciones del entorno oral durante toda la vida. La reducción de su espesor es un proceso biológico que forma parte del envejecimiento natural. Sin embargo, se puede sufrir desgaste patológico que alterará la estructura y función natural de los dientes.

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¿Qué es la erosión dental? Es la pérdida de esmalte y dentina causada por ácidos de origen intrínseco (gástrico – por reflujo ácido o hábitos de vomitar) o extrínseco (dietético relacionado con la ingesta de alimentos o bebidas ácidas). El término erosión,

utilizado para describir lesiones causadas por agentes químicos, es confuso. Un ingeniero químico llamaría corrosión a este proceso. Hasta cierto punto, el desgaste es fisiológico y dependiente de la edad. En cambio, cuando se pierde el esmalte, rápidamente evoluciona a patológico e independiente de la edad. ¿Cómo puedo saber si mis dientes están desgastados? Los bordes de los dientes frontales pueden aparecer más transparentes. Puede notar más sensibilidad al frío y los dientes se vuelven más amarillentos al desaparecer parte del esmalte y exponerse la dentina. ¿Cuáles son los dientes más afectados? Las lesiones por erosión se encuentran preferentemente en los dientes anteriores en la arcada superior. La convexidad del diente se pierde, quedando una forma aplanada en la parte frontal e incluso cóncava si es de la cara palatina. Los molares pierden su anatomía oclusal. ¿Cómo se tratan las lesiones por erosión? El primer paso es eliminar la causa. Buscaremos qué hábitos o alimentos lo están ocasionando. Después, podremos realizar un tratamiento restaurador para preser var la estructura dental sana y devolver al diente su estética y función. Pero el éxito está en conocer qué hábitos han ocasionado esa pérdida del esmalte.

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Dr Begoña Marti graduated in Valencia with further specialist training in Aesthetic and Cosmetic dentistry. Dr Marti joined our outstanding team of leading specialist dental professionals in 2016.




arcos was awarded the British Spanish Society scholarship with the support of O2 & Telefonica to study music composition in 2009. Marcos was commissioned to write for the Orchestra of Almería and other musicians to raise awareness of the disadvantages of Syrian refugees as well as to foster interaction between cultures.

Tell us a little about you. Where do you come from and what is your passion? I was born in Barcelona, where I studied piano at the ESMUC (Music College of Catalonia). My passion about Celtic music took me to study contemporary composition at the The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland in Glasgow and my interest in film music made me study a Masters in film music at the Royal College of Music, London. What are your hobbies or interests? Coffee is my other passion. If I am not at home I will probably be found seating with a smile in a cafe reading, imagining, creating, thinking or writing. I also like windsurfing and after exercising it, regardless how hot and sunny it is in the coast of Barcelona, I would still order a hot coffee in its sandy “chiringuito”. How did you find the scholarship BSS and Telefonica awarded you with? It was hard finding scholarships that supported applications interested in developing a multidisciplinary profile as a composer and pianist instead of specialising in one area. However the BSS scholarship programme valued the importance and uniqueness of combining the areas of film music, contemporary music, theatre, opera, ballet, piano and music production to become a specialist of such union in order to create music. In addition, the BSS Scholarship’s interest in both countries (Spain and UK) also suited the British-Spanish Celtic connection I was aiming to use as part of the development of my voice as a composer.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years time? And, What is your next step in your career? As part of a recent award, I am going to be a busy composer working with all of the 28 symphony orchestras of Spain plus some in Europe. I would still like to continue writing even more for orchestra, opera and ballet, trying new things and making contemporary music accessible to young audiences. But I also want to keep teaching; life, society and audiences are constantly changing and I feel I can give new advice, approaches and shortcuts to young pupils that may find it useful to use in their professional lives. I hope I can expand this dual activity as a creator and teacher, currently set in UK and Spain, onto other countries.

What university and course were you admitted to in the UK? The scholarship was given to study a Masters in Composition at The Royal College of Music, London.

London has enabled me to train over 70 piano and composition pupils per week while keeping a busy and creative activity on the side. I first played cocktail piano music at luxurious hotels, then opera and classical recitals on cruise-ships,improvised music for ballet classes and created new music for the contemporary music scene and even an opera about football next to David Almond (writer of ‘Skellig’). So, later I decided to create ‘Piano Underscore’, a music label which combines all of the above in two albums of original music for piano distributed Worldwide.

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How was your experience of living in London?


WHEN SPAIN REALLY WAS DIFFERENT Dominic Begg remembers being young in the Franco era… tips. Less substantial was the tip I once gave to my sereno (nightwatchman) at the lower end of the Calle Mayor after a night on the tiles. This robust ex-sergeant wore a greatcoat, carried massive jangling key-rings and responded to clapping or the call of “¡Sereno-o-o!” by appearing out of nowhere to unlock the street entrance of your building, for which service you gave him one peseta. On the night in question I’d spent all my cash except for a useless ten-céntimo coin, which I duly palmed to my sereno. He promptly hurled it at my departing back, snarling “¡Yo no trabajo para

a poster with the bar’s lottery number for the pre-Christmas Gordo and, on the wall, a large aerial photo of an arid pueblo, clearly dear to the heart of the veteran proprietress, who is gruffly going about her business behind the barra. I’ve only seen this film once, but the details remain fresh because they are so accurate.

céntimos!” I laid low for the following two nights and on the third I tipped him a duro (5 pesetas). He thanked me profusely, almost as if I was Pirri or Gento of Real Madrid. Harmony had been restored. Meanwhile, serenos indirectly helped to keep unmarried girls on the straight and narrow. Old-school fathers would instruct daughters to be home before lockingup time, which led to young couples locked in passionate embraces, just yards from the girl’s building and until a few seconds before the sereno’s 10.30 curfew. You wonder how the likes of Twiggy or George Best would have dealt with this system…

In major Spanish cities bars of this kind are becoming rarer, just as “wet” pubs in the U.K. have given way to gastro-pubs or cheap eateries like Wetherspoons. In Barcelona many of the traditional bars that survive are now run by Chinese families who can provide the same tapas, but without the old-style ambiance. Likewise the family-run colmado on the corner has become a mini-market managed by Pakistanis. And bakeries selling coffees to shoppers do more business than classic watering-holes. These are just some of the changes I’ve observed since first coming to Spain in 1955, aged 6, when the roads in Catalonia were terrible and the beaches remote and magical. L’Escala’s fishing-fleet, featuring huge lamps for attracting fish at night, is long gone, so it’s a bitter-sweet moment for me whenever I see surviving fishermen’s lamps decorating the walls of a seafood restaurant. After several trips to other parts of Spain in the mid-60s, I then spent three months in Madrid in 1967. This was when I really got to grips with local habits and characters. In those days it seemed that most people wore some kind of uniform. As well as nuns and the military, you had car-park attendants (often amputees), municipal street-sweepers (corduroy), white-helmeted traffic-cops, dignified professional waiters (black tie, white jacket) and cinema ushers (whom you tipped). The sweeper and the postman each sent you a little card shortly before Christmas, resulting in substantial

Madrid in those days, and into the 70s when I moved there, seemed remarkably homely for a capital city. I knew the stallholders at the San Miguel market, the local barmen and waiters, even the iceman, who delivered heavy blocks of ice to restaurants, carried in Hessian sacking to protect the hands. I once persuaded the boss of the restaurant ‘El Huevo’ (now ‘La Forja de Sesnández’) to sell me one of his blocks, which, with difficulty, I hauled across the Plaza Mayor to a party in Calle Fresa. It was frozen so hard that we were unable to chip much ice off it for drinks. When a visit from the police put an end to the party, a group of us carried the four-foot long block to a night-club, thus ensuring there’d be no shortage of ice in our gins or rums. In the 60s and 70s these mixed drinks came in narrow tubos, which left little space for you to add tonic or coke. Those who like plenty of mixer, as well as men with prominent noses, can now drink more comfortably, thanks to the fashion for gintónics served in bowl-style glasses. If De la Iglesia’s movie had been set in the early 70s, the bar’s window-panels would have featured crude paintings of churros and cañas, next to a sign proclaiming ‘Hay Limonada’; there would be a pinball machine (flipper) or a bar-football table (futbolín) towards the back near the W.C.; a black public telephone on the wall that required you to slot in a ficha, a small coin like the old threepenny piece, with two thick vertical grooves; smokers would be untwisting the paper at each end of their next Celta cigarette, before sealing it with saliva and puffing away; a lad doing the mili might be returning empty litre wine-bottles with stars around the neck in exchange for a peseta or two, an example of recycling before we’d heard the word. Above all there’d be noise and vitality, along with discarded toothpicks and prawn-heads crunching under your feet. So, was life better under Franco? Apart from the bars, probably not; but it sure was different.

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ast year, watching the opening sequences of Alex de la Iglesia’s movie ‘El Bar’ got me thinking back to the thousands of hours I must have spent in Spanish bars, bodegas, taverns and dives since the mid-60s and about how much or how little they have changed. De la Iglesia lovingly recreates the kind of popular establishment that has rows of cups and saucers (balanced atop the tapas display units) ready to be filled from a hissing coffee-machine for dozy office-workers during the morning rush. On the TV there’s news that nobody is watching. There’s a fruit-machine,



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he death of British scientist Stephen Hawking on March 14th drew worldwide tributes, not least in Spain where his life and work extended a huge bridge of popular cultural as well as metaphysical engagement.


Hawking took to the stage with Anathema - a rock band from Liverpool - to perform a version of Pink Floyd’s Keep Talking, which famously sampled his voice in 1994. The Starmus festival was the brainchild of British rock guitarist icon Brian May (Queen) who studied astronomy in the Canaries, and Garik Israelin, an astronomer, at the Institute for Astrophysics (IAC) in Tenerife. The gathering focused on celebrating astronomy, space exploration, music, art, and allied sciences such as biology and chemistry. Enrique Pérez Montero, of the Instituto de Astrofísica de Andalucía (IAC-CSIC) said: “For disabled people, Hawking has been a spectacular example, a demonstration that with effort one can get far.” The chairman of BBVA, Francisco González, described Hawking as one of the most brilliant scientists of our age, “a source of inspiration” and “a unique ambassador for the spirit of survival .”

Hawking was honored with the Fronteras del Conocimiento Fundación BBVA prize in 2016. In the week he died, Hawking was also paid a special tribute during the BritishSpanishSociety’s panel discussion on Global Risks in Madrid at the IE Business School. The BSS chairman Jimmy Burns Marañón told the conference that Hawking was a leading light to all organizations that supported engagement rather than conflict, and a special inspiration of the Society’s scholarship programme. Burns said: “Hawking defied astronomical odds to reach for the stars. He defied science in its limitations while excelling in its possibilities. And he showed humanity at its most resilient and heroic. He saw light in the blackest of blackest holes, and was a huge believer that dialogue holds the key to survival.”

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While his seminal book A Brief History of Time and recent film of his life were widely read and viewed among the general Spanish public, it was in The Canaries that Hawking made one of his most memorable performances during the Starmus Festival in Tenerife in 2016, his third annual consecutive visit to the islands, by sea from Southampton.

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La Revista Issue 246  

Spring / Summer 2018

La Revista Issue 246  

Spring / Summer 2018