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With the support of:

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Within the context of questioning many artistic structures, Improbable Connections wants to revindicate the essential role of the structures of art training, dissemination and production. Without them, it would be difficult for artists and thinkers, who contribute great value to society in general and a project such as Improbable Connections in particular, to continue researching and experiencing other ways of conceiving and constructing the world.
Ipar Uribe
Location: Sopelana, Bizkaia

Legal form of host entity: City Councils and Mancomunidad
Founding years of Euskera services: Between 1995 and 2002
Euskera service workers: 4 people in each City Council of Getxo, Erandio and Leioa and 5 in the Mancomunidad.

Ownership of results of the improbable project: Option A (copyleft / creative commons)

Ipar Uribe* + Philippa Nicole Barr & Pulsar Concept

*City Councils of Erandio, Leioa and Getxo & Uribe Kosta  Mancomunidad (an association of municipalities that includes the City Councils of Barrika, Berango, Gorliz, Lemoiz, Plentzia, Sopelana and Urduliz)

Developed project

A mobile game application is being designed aimed at an audience aged between 16 and 25.

The game is based on following the song rhythms of a band that is playing in virtual concerts located in Uribe Kosta, Getxo, Leioa and Erandio. It consists of a musical adventure inspired by “Guitar Hero” character at different levels of difficulty in which points are scored by playing songs whose music is being heard and whose lyrics are being read. The game can be played individually or in a group, with the latter resulting in a chat group connecting together the various members.

The aim of the game is for young people to use the Basque language (Euskera), with passive use through the musical performance of the songs in Euskera and active (written) use through the chat group open to the participants.

The game’s prototype will be tested by about twenty young people in Leioa between 3 and 10 February 2012 prior to its actual completion.

[October 2011] Design and production of the game by Pulsar Concept

Based on suggestions and ideas from Philippa Nicole Barr, Pulsar Concept is designing a video game aimed at people aged between 18 and 24.

[may 2011] Draft project presented by Philippa Nicole Barr

The Colours: A multimedia game and event in Euskera. This project is motivated by the observation that for young people Euskera is normally associated with formal contexts, like school or administration, but not in casual social situations. The game will use audiovisual technology to turn images and sounds into symbols with emotional significance – thereby stimulating the retention and use of Euskera.  This gives young speakers a reason to use their language that is casual, associated with hanging out, but nonetheless with a crucial cultural value.

[january 2011] Research requested by Ipar Uribe

Based on the reality of the territory covered by the City Councils (right bank of the Ibaizabal River, within the metropolitan area of Bilbao), to design and develop mechanisms to encourage young people (approximately 16-25 years old) to use Euskera (Basque) in their informal practices. The aim is to think/act at both a symbolic (images) and practical level.

Ipar Uribe

The ten City Councils that have come together to undertake this research represent a population of about 170,000 people, half of which live in Getxo. They cover a fairly homogeneous area in terms of economic, sociolinguistic and political features. Most of their inhabitants work in the services sector. Roughly 20% of the population is bilingual (Euskera-Spanish), another 20% are passively bilingual (capable of passively understanding the two languages but only active in Spanish), and 60% are monolingual (Spanish), with large differences depending on age. Among those who know Euskera, the practice of it, although not high in any age group, falls dramatically with people aged between 16-25 (after compulsory education and before they become parents). Most of the inhabitants share the view that the use of Euskera should be standardised.

The Improbable project is led by the Euskera services of the three City Councils of Erandio, Leioa and Getxo, and the Uribe Kosta Mancomunidad. They operate in a territory where Euskera is a minority language and their aim is to standardise its use among the population, as well as in social and institutional areas. They promote activities aimed primarily at children and young people, institutional areas and the service sector. 

The core work team consists of a technician for each Euskera service (4 people in total).

Philippa Nicole Barr + Pulsar Concept

Philippa Nicole Barr

Fields of work: Editor and visual designer; photographer; producer.

After graduating with Honours in Anthropology in Sydney in 2005, she has undertaken a range of different projects in Central Australia and Europe in cross-cultural and multi-lingual contexts.

She worked as a researcher in Alice Springs, Central Australia, at the Centre for Appropriate Technology, an organisation that works to enable indigenous people to live in remote communities (Aboriginal people speaking different languages - Arrente, Pitjantjatjara, Walpiri etc -).

Since 2009 she has been living between Berlin and Milan, studying and working on various media and design projects.

Pulsar Concept

Pulsar Concept, comprising Jon Iñaki Martinez, Jon Lopez de Guereña, Mikel Cearsolo and Mikel Calvo, is a newly created company in Bizkaia dedicated to information technology and the creation of entertainment products.

It has experience in the video gaming and mobile applications sector and works from the knowledge of its users via social media sites or usage of its products, always with the aim of offering the best user experience.