2022 Euskadi Literature Prizes to Uxue Apaolaza, Leire Bilbao and Maite Mutuberria

Euskara. Kultura. Mundura.


Uxue Apaolaza, Leire Bilbao and Maite Mutuberria will be awarded Euskadi Literature prizes in the categories of Literature in Euskera, Young People´s Literature in Euskera and Illustration of Literary Works, respectively, for their work ´Bihurguneko nasa´ (Susa), ´Barruko hotsak´ (Pamiela) and ´Irrimola´ (Ikaselkar).

The Basque Minister for Culture and Language Policy, Bingen Zupiria, announced the names of the first three winners of this year´s Euskadi Literature Awards at a press conference held at the Artium Museum in Vitoria-Gasteiz.

The jury for the category of Literature in Euskera was composed of Lourdes Otaegi, Ane Labaka, Jon Martin, Yurre Ugarte and Josu Jiménez, in whose opinion Uxue Apaolaza´s ´Bihurguneko nasa´ offered "a rich reflection on identity and otherness. It is written in muscular prose that is a pleasure to read, and the exact literary craftsmanship also gives it a certain crudeness, free of all explanation and digression. The language fits the content beautifully in an intense dynamic where the reader will perceive the protagonist’s awakening as she delves into the intricacies of the details.”

The jury also considered that ´Barruko hotsak, by Leire Bilbao is "a visual poem that reinvents the genre of calligram, full of rhymes and rhythms. The perplexity provoked by the unexpected fusion of the text of the book, the typographic games and the images offers the possibility of very diverse readings". The jury, made up of Manuel López, Larraitz Idarreta, Karla Fernández de Gamboa, Ziortza Onaindia and Patxi Zubizarreta, added that it is a book "to read with the ears and listen with the eyes, fun and full of exquisite humour. The excellent composition, layout and illustration also stand out". The illustrations are the work of Maite Mutuberria, who this year will receive the Euskadi Literature Prize in the category of Illustration of Literary Work.

Maite Mutuberria will also receive this year´s Euskadi Literature Award for Illustration of Literary Work for her book ´Irrimola´. For the jury, Mutuberria´s work takes the concept of the illustrated album "to another dimension, a book-object designed in a circular format whose composition allows experimentation and play with reading. There is an elaborate concept behind the illustrations which, together with the appropriate use of graphic resources, enhances the different layers and ways of reading. In addition, the planning of the images takes advantage of the repetition of the circular geometry, evoking other references such as the planisphere or zootropes, and makes reading and rereading them an endless pleasure that renders the book inexhaustible". Javier de Isusi, María Altuna, Jon Mantzisidor, Yolanda Mosquera and Miren Asiaien comprised the jury.

More awards

Edurne Portela, Koro Navarro, Irati Jimenez and Teresa Maldonado will receive Euskadi Literature Awards in the categories of Literature in Spanish, Literary Translation into Basque, Essay in Basque, and Essay in Spanish, respectively, for their works ´Los ojos cerrados´ (Galaxia Gutenberg), ´Fiesta Eguzkia jaikitzen da´ (Ernest Hemingway) (Erein&Igela), ´Begiak zabalduko zaizkizue´ (Elkar) and ‘Hablemos claro’ (Catarata).

The jury that decided on Irati Jiménez´s ´Begiak zabalduko zaizkizue´ as the winner of the Euskadi Literature Prize in the Basque Essay category comprised Alexander Gurrutxaga, Ane Miren Larrinaga, Aitor Zuberogoitia, Katixa Agirre and Xabier Aierdi. “Jiménez´s exercise of constantly questioning readers and making them reflect” stood out for the jury, who added that “the tone of the book conveys passion and love for literature written in an elaborate and personal style".

The jury for the category of Literary Translation into Basque considered that Koro Navarro, in terms of the great literary value of the book, "has taken the appropriate decisions so as not to lose the strength and vitality of the original text, making use of the resources of the Basque language". The jury in this category was made up of Aintzane Ibarzabal, Idoia Gillenea and Idoia Santamaria.

According to this year’s jury for the Literature Prize in Spanish – Txani Rodríguez, Javier Maura, Aixa de la Cruz, Jesús Camarero and Patricia Millán – Edurne Portela´s ‘Los ojos cerrados’ creates an "enriching play of perspectives from which the tension between the told and the untold emerges and establishes a dialogue between the present and the past to reflect on guilt and forgiveness".

Lastly, the jury for the category of Essay in Spanish, comprising Mikel Reparaz, Iñigo Marauri, MªJesús Pando, Ainhoa Novo and Javier Camarra, felt that Teresa Maldonado had a particularly concise and clear style and that she was “capable of tackling a complex and controversial subject in a precise and simple but nuanced way".

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