Mountain, Nature and Adventure
Photo and Video Contest
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 29/10/2003.- Mountain Hard Wear and Lowepro award
When the organisation of the Contest decided to create, apart from the traditional awards, a specific award for slides on mountaineering for the 2003 edition, the purpose was that the award would not just become another conventional prize. This award intended to combine mountain and photography; this is the basis of the contest and, therefore, we turned to two of the most prestigious commercial firms in each sector: Mountain Hard Wear and Lowepro.

If we want to be safe from the inclemency of the weather and from cold nights in high mountains, nothing better than sheltering inside a Trango tent, by Mountain Hard Wear. Similarly, our photographic equipment will also benefit from the additional protection provided by the Lowepro material which we will also offer the author of the winning image.

Both elements will allow the photographer and his team to survive in perfect conditions and continue taking photographs, like the ones we intend to reward, for a long time.

This double prize also has a double dimension: to reward the winner of this special section and, at the same time, to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of the first ascent to Mount Everest.

 01/09/2003.- The XIV Edition of The MarĂ­a Luisa Memorial takes off with mountaineering as the star.
The idea of giving the images which represent the singular world of mountaineering a bigger role has been floating around for a while in the Maria Luisa Memorial. A better edition than this year’s could not be found in which, among other things, the fiftieth anniversary of the first ascent of Mount Everest will be celebrated.

Mountaineering and the mountaineers will be the star of the XIV edition, and as such, a specific prize has been designated for this subject, in addition to the other already traditional ones in the competition, so that the competition may have the maximum acceptance, as in other years.

We are aware that in the mountains difficulties apart from those already inherent in photography compound when not impede photographic successes. The cold, the apathy, the weight, the hurrying, and the altitude must be made up through a strong will and knowledge of the art of photography, sometimes giving it more importance than to the athletic activity; only in this way, and even so, rarely are satisfying results obtained. It is this scarce amount of highly valuable images which this singular edition hopes to prize in a special way. With them, everyone participates, although in a virtual manner, in those great ascensions.

We can’t take the pictures for you, but from the Maria Luisa Memorial we would like to, in some way, make waiting for the correct light in the mountains a little easier. To this effect we will give in addition to this extraordinary prize and its corresponding trophy, a formidable Trango tent by Mountain Hard Wear and a Lowepro bag; you and your photographic equipment will surely appreciate it.
 09/07/2003.- 09-07-2003 The "Picos de Europa" declared European Biosphere Reservation.
The International Council for the Coordination of the "Mab" - Man and Biosphere - from UNESCO declared the Picos de Europa masiff a Biosphere Reservation, after the failed attempt to do so in November of 2002.

Our country currently has 26 of the total 400 areas under the aforementioned classification which make up the World Net of Biosphere Reservations. But what is better yet, is that the declaration concerning the Picos de Europa only very presumably confirms the first step in forming what in the immediate future could be the "Gran Cantåbrica" reservation, since the currently protected area extends to the South including the regional park of Riaño and to the North and West so that it would form a whole with the inclusion of the current Redes Reservation.
 30/06/2003.- MĂłn Lueje 100th Anniversary.
Today is the 100th anniversary of the birth of José Ramón Lueje the famous mountaineer from Piloña. The anniversary is being celebrated these days in the town of Infiesto, with acts, exhibits, round table discussions on mountaineering, projections and book presentations and other institutional acts.

An active and long life of mountaineering allowed Lueje to cover and analyze the Range minutely. He carried out some of the first ascents such as the Northeastern corridor of the Espiguete, on the 9th of September, 1939, in the company of Enesimo Reyero and Frutos Espada. This route continues to be one of the more notable ascents of this mountain located in Palencia. He has other strong connections with de Cantabrian Mountain Range and with the Picos de Europa, in that one of the needles of Los Argaos and a refuge bear his name.

In addition to his familiarity with the mountains of the Cantabrian Mountain Range and the Picos de Europa, "Mon" Lueje was also responsible for spreading the fame of these areas through the publication of rigorous works all of which are renowned; although, without a doubt his most famous being "Picos del Cornion" a work concerning this masiff in Picos which is accompanied by magnificent panoramic maps and drawings by Piñole.
 29/05/2003.- Fifty years later
On this date, fifty years ago, sir Edmund Hillary and the sherpa Tenzig Norgay, completed the conquest of Mount Everest, and thus closed the door on various decades of exploration of what came to be known as the earth's third Pole while simultaneously opening it to the history of mountain climbing on the highest mountain on the planet.

This event, which took place at 11:30 A.M. on the 29th of May of 1953, was immortalized by the most popular image of all those obtained up to that date on a great mountain.

This singular occurrence, in addition to its repercussion in the media, shadowed other contemporary alpine feats, such as, among others, the solitary ascent of the Nanga Parbat by Hermann Buhl and the climbing of the K2 via the Abruzzos Spur which will also reach their fiftieth anniversary in the near future.

The next edition of the Memorial will acknowledge these fifty years of photographic and sporting feats and failures in the highest peaks of the planet.
 24/02/2003.- The ending of an extraordinary edition
There is a series of events strongly tied to the Principado of Asturias and signed "made in Asturias" which are diverse among each other but which all have a common denominator: all have had important repercussions beyond our borders (Fiesta de Les PiragĂŒes, the Principe de Asturias Awards). Without doubt, in the world of mountaineering and photography there is an event which is known in all the Continents: the Maria Luisa Memorial of Mountain Slides.

Faithful to their annual date in the month of February, the Maria Luisa Memorial has presented the XII Edition awards. This edition shall be remembered as the most important of all, up to date. Certainly, there are plenty of reasons to support this opinion.

If in the previous twelve editions the contest had already enjoyed a diverse range of subjects, in this last edition a new subject has been included the "Mountain People".

The humane and cultural aspects, the inhabitants (more than 3000 million in the world) who work and live (survive, in the majority of the cases), in mountain settings have been the true stars of the award, of extraordinary character, which the Maria Luisa Memorial has conceded to the slide considered to be the most representative of the human situation. Hundreds of photographic works from all over the world have competed in this modality. Inhabitants from the mountains of Africa, Nepal, Switzerland and other places have been the true stars of this modality.

However, it is a young shepherd riding his donkey on his way to the high pastures in the foothills of Chimborazo who will be remembered as the subject which the Canadian Philippe Henry sent to the competition and finally ended up as the winner in this special edition.

In any event, the high point of the awards derived from the presence of the winners Cornelia and Raymond Döer who travelled from Germany to Oviedo in order to personally accept the prize: "the moment we received word from the Maria Luisa Memorial we went to the DĂŒsseldorf library in order to look for information about Asturias and to tell the truth, we found very little. Now we know that it's an extraordinary region with tremendous photographic possibilities. There's no doubt that this year we'll be returning to Asturias".

At 8 P.M. everything was ready in order to begin the awards ceremony and the audiovisual projections. Jose Carlos Rubio (a chemist and an outstanding athlete from Piloña) was putting the finishing touches on his presentation; those in charge of the Maria Luisa Memorial audiovisual projections were revising the projectors for the umpteenth time, in the music booth the final musical preparations were being made, those in charge of the Cajastur Hall of Ceremonies were seeing that no attendant went without their copy of "Great Spaces" - the official Maria Luisa Memorial magazine - the winners were watching everything going on around them, the public was anxious to see the slide show, and those who were late, were trying to negotiate their way into the hall although, in yet another year, attendance was at maximum

Iñaki Bergara, who was also in attendance at the awards ceremony came to Oviedo to share his success (he was the third finalist) with the public. "Lately I've been asked many questions about this slide. I've brought another one which gives a better understanding of the lighting used in the winning slide in case anyone wants to see it. As an architect, I think there's a pretty interesting geometric play of light in the image," he commented to the crowd.

As has become tradition, once the awards had been given out there was a projection of "Vidas de Montaña". A total of 305 slides were presented to the public on a wide screen.

In closing this Edition, the organization wanted to give special mention to the great mountain photographer Galen Rowell who passed away in August, 2000. Among music and images, the Maria Luisa Memorial paid a final tribute to this fantastic photographer and closed its XIII Edition. From this point on, whatever activities take place will form part of the XIV Edition.
 10/02/2003.- XIII Edition Awards on Friday February 14th. The German winners Cornelia and Raymond Döer will be in attendance

Foto: Philippe Henry
Next Friday, February 14th, the XIII Special Edition will take place in the Cajastur Hall of Ceremonies located on San Francisco Street in Oviedo. This edition which will be close with this final ceremony has had a special character in terms of the convocation as well as the results of the same. So much so, that it should be considered, without a doubt the most important convocation to date.

On this occasion, the landscapes and sporting varieties traditionally reflected in the works presented in the previous twelve editions are compounded by the enormous human, cultural, and ethnographic diversity of the peoples who inhabit the mountainous regions of the planet. Slides by photographers from countries such as Canada, Colombia and the U.S.A. were submitted for the first time and joined the others who already habitually made up the Competition. As a result it has reached 40 countries worldwide.

If on only two previous occasions the first prize had gone beyond Spanish borders (the Slovakian Alexander Kufar won in 1996 and the Italian Armando Maniciati in 2001), in this XIII Edition both the first prize as well as the extraordinary "Mountain People" went to foreign photographers. The Germans Cornelia and Raymond Döerr were the winners of this Edition and the Canadian Philippe Henry took the prize for "Mountain People".

The first prize winners will be in attendance at the ceremony travelling from their home of DĂŒsseldorf in order to personally receive the award. This is an award which, due to its economic value alone will grant them the prestige of belonging to that group of select photographers that comprise the winners of the Maria Luisa Memorial.

Once the awards are given out, there will be an audiovisual projection as has now become tradition of "Vidas de Montaña" the images of which reflect the motivations which inspire this competition and which have inspired this special Edition. There will be nothing missing for all those who understand the language of mountains and photography.

A free copy of "Great Spaces", the Memorial's official magazine, will be provided to all those in attendance.
 06/02/2003.- The Center for Conventions and Exhibitions of Cordoba will host the Maria Luisa Memorial
For the first time, by invitation of the Southern Spanish city's mountain group, the Maria Luisa Memorial Travelling Slide Exhibit will be presented in Cordoba in order to coincide with the celebration of their VI "Sierra Morena" Hike.

The collection, comprised of 78 large scale images, will be presented in the old San Sebastian hospital, a gothic construction which has been rehabilitated and transformed into the Convention and Exhibition Center. This construction is one of the most emblematic and luxurious buildings in which an exhibit may be presented.

The inauguration will take place at 8 P.M. and the organization is already sending out the corresponding invitations. The exhibit will remain open to the public until the 16th of March.

After thirty exhibits and having covered almost the totality of this country's regional as well as national geography, such as the exhibits held in the University of Navarra, Ibi, the National Center of Photography in Cantabria, the Al Hadra Society of Algiers, or the Desnivel Gallery in Madrid, this will probably be the last time that the exhibit will be seen under the title of "Twelve Years of Mountain Images" since the Organization will incorporate new photographs - those awarded prizes in the latest special Edition, which will take place on the 14th of February - to the collection.

The quality of the images, the variety of the subject matter and the cultural diversity as well as the plurality of mountain sports which may be seen in the photographs in addition to the format and the particular and studied nature of the exhibition have caused the public (estimated at more than 50,000 up to this date) and critics to consider the Maria Luisa Memorial unique in its genre. This is not surprising considering that the exhibit source comes from more than 12,000 photographs from 2,500 artists from 40 different countries.
 03/01/2003.- 13th Edition of the Memorial MarĂ­a Luisa: a double prize

Foto: Cornelia & Ramon Doer
Cornelia & Ramon Doerr, from Germany, win the first prize and Philippe Henry, from Canada, the special prize of the I.Y.M. 2002.

It was obvious that this edition would not go down in the history of the Memorial MarĂ­a Luisa as just another ordinary edition. Right at the beginning of the year 2002, the Memorial was already working on what were to be the guidelines for the 13th Edition, with the celebration of the I.Y.M. 2002 in the limelight.

The results of this feat have been extraordinary, as has the edition itself, which has had outstanding popularity with photographers and mountaineers, both national and from abroad.

For this reason, and in the light of the experience of the year before, when the chairman of the jury had to adjourn what was supposed to be the last session of deliberations and call a new session as he considered that "...when there were only 20 slides left on the table the atmosphere was no longer suitable for deciding on a calm judgement...", the deliberations were better planned and took longer than ever. (more info.)

The organisers, in this special edition of the competition, have not made life easy for the members of the jury. If choosing a winning slide is a difficult task in itself, it must be even harder to choose a slide for each of the subjects that were offered this year. Different subject matter, different sensibilities, different motivations, different prizes but always a common denominator: the high quality of the photographs presented.

A selection of the best pictures will be part of the audiovisual exhibition that will be presented at the Centro Cultural Cajastur, on San Francisco Street, Oviedo, on the 14th of February, coinciding with the prizegiving ceremony; meanwhile, the winning pictures of the 13th Edition, which can be seen on this page (menu: Prizes 2002), are the following:.

Results of the 13th Edition 2002
"Memorial MarĂ­a Luisa"

13th FIRST PRIZE Finalist

Fitzroy Massif
Cornelia & Ramon Doeer
Duesseldorf (Germany)


1Âș - Parque Torres del Paine
Juan Manuel Iruela
Castril de la Peña (Granada - Spain)

2Âș - Descenso
José María Arrigain
Tolosa (GuipĂșzcua - Spain)

3Âș - Juego de Luz
Iñaki Bergera
Pamplona (Navarra - Spain)

4Âș - Last Rays
Matej Rupel

5Âș - Basalt Rocks and Plants
Marc Lootmaekers

6Âș - Selva de Hoza (II)
Patxi Franco
Legazpi (GuipĂșzcua - Spain)

7Âș - Cerezos en Pineta
Antonio Real Hurtado
Almansa (Albacete - Spain)

8Âș - Pico Cinco Hermanos
Juan Manuel Iruela
Castril de la Peña (Granada - Spain)

9Âș - Itzalargi
Miguel Angel Otsoa
Legazpi (GuipĂșzcua - Spain)

10Âș - Otoño
Pablo Quesada
Barcelona - Spain

11Âș - Lluna
Carlos VerdĂș
Ibi (Alicante - Spain)


Best Picture Ice Climbing
Colmillo devorador
José Isidro Gordito
Madrid - Spain

Best Picture Mountain Biking
Santa Marina
Iosu Garai
Oñati (GuipĂșzcoa - Spain)

Best Picture Mountain Wildlife
Wolfs in snow
Marc Slootmaekers

Best Picture Rock Climbing
Bola de Navajuelos I
JesĂșs Ayuso
Madrid - Spain

Best Picture Canyon Descent
Trou de Fer
Juan Carlos Perez
Almusafes (Valencia - Spain)

Best Picture Mountain Flora
Alexander Cufar

Special Prize I.Y.M. 2002 "Mountain People"

1Âș - Young Shepherd of Pullingui
Philippe Henry
Québec (Canada)

2Âș - Zanskari Women
Sagato Renzo
Torino (Italy)

3Âș - Niñas del Atlas
Pablo Quesada
Barcelona (Spain)
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Memorial MarĂ­a Luisa
Apartado de Correos 19, 33530 Infiesto (Asturias - Spain)