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News Archive - Winter 2001–2002

Molly Flagg Knudtsen wills donation to Center
The Center for Basque Studies recently received a generous donation from the estate of Molly Flagg Knudtsen, a Nevada rancher and former debutante who passed away last July. She had been a regent of the University of Nevada, Reno from 1960-1980 and helped found the Desert Research Institute (initial home of the Basque Studies Program) and the Anthropology Department. She received the Distinguished Nevadan Award in 1994. The Center is very honored and grateful to have been remembered by Ms. Knudtsen in her will.

New Advisory Board Members —

Architect Frank Gehry and Basque industrialist Juan Zelaia join Advisory Board as honorary members; Pete Ernaut becomes newest member of Board

At the recent CBS Advisory Board meeting held in Reno, Director Joseba Zulaika announced that two distinguished figures had agreed to become Honorary Members of the board. Architect Frank Gehry, based in Los Angeles, designed the Guggenheim Bilbao Museum, considered the most emblematic building of the turn of the century. Juan Zelaia Letamendi is a Basque industrialist from Vitoria with international business interests who supports initiatives in Basque culture.

The Advisory Board also welcomed its newest regular member, Pete Ernaut of Nevada, who is Managing Director, Government Affairs and Public Policy for Jones Vargas and has been active in Nevada State politics.

We are honored to have these eminent individuals associated with our Center.

    Photo: Lisa Corcostegui

Center for Basque Studies Advisory Board meets in Reno
The CBS Advisory Board met in Reno on February 2 to review accomplishments of the past year and to discuss future goals and priorities. Dean Robert Mead and Development Director Jodi Manatt of the College of Arts and Science addressed the Board. Center faculty and staff each then presented information on their work areas and key projects, including ideas for future projects.

Bob Gabrielli, Development Director for the University of Nevada, Reno Foundation, also spoke regarding how the Foundation functions to assist the colleges and departments with fundraising. One of the stated missions of the Advisory Board is to advise the Center on relevant topics for research, as well as to assist in fundraising activities to procure the capital resources needed to carry out those projects.

At the afternoon meeting, Board Chairman John Echeverria led the members in a discussion of which projects to pursue and long-term fundraising goals. In addition to Chair Echeverria, other members present were Michonne Ascuaga, Mike Bidart, Pete Cenarrusa, Emilia Doyaga, Pello Salaburu, Carmelo Urza, and John Ysursa. Center Director Joseba Zulaika was also in attendance. Other members of the board include Anita Anacabe-Franzoia, Joe Ansolabehere, Begoña Aretxaga, José María Basagoiti, José Ramón Cengotitabengoa, William Douglass, Jeronima Echeverria, new board member Pete Ernaut, and Felipe Muguerza. Honorary members are Frank Gehry and Juan Zelaia Letamendi.

View photos of the Advisory Board meeting.

Dr. Pello Salaburu

Pello Salaburu presents lecture on Basque language standardization
Visiting professor Dr. Pello Salaburu spoke on “The Basque Language Standardization Project of Euskaltzaindia (Basque Language Academy)” on February 6 at the University of Nevada, Reno. He discussed the history of the Academy and their monumental task in creating a unified (batua) dialect of Basque, which historically has many dialectal variations.

Dr. Pello Salaburu served as President of the University of the Basque Country from 1996-2000 and as Vice President from 1992-1996. He has a Ph.D. in Basque Philology from the University of the Basque Country, and also studied at the universities of MIT, Cornell, and New Mexico. During a sabbatical in 2000-2001, Salaburu spent a year in residence at the Center for Basque Studies, and now serves on the Center’s Advisory Board. Presently he is a professor of Basque Philology at the University of the Basque Country.

Oskar Espina-Ruiz

Basque clarinetist performs in Reno
The Center for Basque Studies, in cooperation with UNR’s Music Department and the University Studies Abroad Consortium, presented a concert by renowned Basque clarinetist, Oskar Espina-Ruiz, on February 1, 2002. Mr. Espina-Ruiz, accompanied by pianist Noriko Nagasawa, performed a program of musical pieces by Basque composers that was very well-received by the large audience. He also gave commentary during the performance to inform listeners about Basque classical music and its development.

A graduate of Mannes College of Music, Purchase Conservatory, and SUNY at Stonybrook, Oskar Espina-Ruiz was top clarinetist Award Winner at the 1999 Olga Koussevitzky Competition for Woodwinds and winner of Artists International’s 1999 Annual New York Debut Award. He has been featured in concert series in Spain, Central and Eastern Europe, Japan, China, and the U.S., including Carnegie Hall.

CBS Director featured on Mexican television program
Joseba Zulaika, Director of the Center for Basque Studies, was interviewed for a cultural program by Mexico City’s Channel 22. The program aired on January 28 and featured a discussion on the Bilbao Guggenheim Museum, an area that Dr. Zulaika has researched for several years. This semester at UNR, he is teaching a class on the topic, Museums, Architecture, City Renewal: The Bilbao Guggenheim (BASQ/ANTHRO/ART 466, 666).


Joseba Zulaika presents paper at Mexico City conference
Center Director Joseba Zulaika presented a paper on “Seducciones, asimetrías, globalizaciones: Las lecciones del Museo Guggenheim Bilbao” at the SITAC conference—Primer Simposio Internacional de Teoría sobre Arte Contemporánea: Intercambio de Experiencias en el Arte Contemporáneo—held in Mexico City, January 24-26, 2002. His paper was accompanied by a PowerPoint presentation featuring the Guggenheim Museum “franchises” around the world.

The conference was sponsored by Mexico’s Consejo Nacional para la Cultura y las Artes; Instituto Nacional de Bellas Artes; and Patronato de Arte Contemporáneo, among others, as well as by corporate entities such as AT&T and Nextel.

White, Gabilondo participate in Basque panel at MLA conference
Center faculty Linda White and Joseba Gabilondo attended the Modern Language Association annual conference in New Orleans December 27-30, where they participated in the first Basque literature panel ever held at MLA. The panel was entitled “Inside, Outside, Inside Out: Basque Women Writers from Three Perspectives.”

Dr. White presented her paper “From the Outside Booking In: Basque Women Writers Urretabizkaia, Mintegi, and Oñederra Viewed Through Anglo-American Feminism and Majority Language Stylistic Imposition.” Dr. Gabilondo spoke on “Postnational Desire Inside Out: Basque Women Writing Inside and Out the National Matrix of the Middle-Class First Person. A Reconsideration of the Identity/Desire Debate.”

A third paper, by Mari Jose Olaziregi, was also read for the panel: “Marginak apurtuz egungo euskal literatur sisteman: euskal errealitate berriak emakumezkoen ahotsetan.”

Joxe Mallea-Olaetxe presents paper at Oñati conference
Basque researcher Joxe Mallea Olaetxe presented a paper on “Zumarraga, Arantzazu, ta Oñatiarrak” at a conference held in Oñati, Spain. It was the I Congreso Internacional – Arantzazu y Los Franciscanos Vascos en América / Arantzazu eta Euskal Frantziskotarrak Ameriketan that took place December 11-15, 2001.

Author Mark Kurlansky
photo: L. Klausner

Mark Kurlansky inducted into Basque Hall of Fame
Mark Kurlansky, author of The Basque History of the World, was inducted into the Basque Hall of Fame by the Society of Basque Studies in America. He was honored at a ceremony held December 9 in New York City for his contributions to the maintenance of Basque culture. The event featured a buffet prepared by five-star chef Iñaki Lete, along with traditional dance, music, and song.

Mr. Kurlansky started out as a press correspondent in the Basque Country and recently was awarded the title of Ambassador of Txakolin by the City of Bilbao. He demonstrated the txakolin ritual for the Hall of Fame attendees.

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