Cage for Free Birds - Bilbao Fine Arts Museum

Buy image

Cage for Free Birds

Mendiburu, Remigio

Hondarribia, Gipuzkoa, 19/01/1931-Barcelona, 15/04/1990

Oak and hazel wood

122 x 110 x 120.7 cm


Third quarter of the 20th century


Acquired in 2006

Mendiburu was however more interested in appearances, in natural morphology, the numen of trees and forests. In his best work he found an original way of revealing the poetry hidden in the correspondences between specific models of nature and apparently unrelated cultural creations: the tree itself with a cage, or random logs of wood piled up with a carpentry-like assemblage of planed pieces. This kind of work is well represented by Cage for Free Birds and in the slightly later piece entitled Roots. With the practical sense of craftsmen's procedures lost in the mists of time, what they express is the mysterious humanity of nature: the cages as a constructed tree or the tree as a cage for free birds, as much as the no less secret natural print that remains in pre-industrial manufactured goods, a way of conjuring up in the present the traditional world and, perhaps, of pointing to a lost harmony. (Javier Viar)

Selected bibliography

  • Remigio Mendiburu. Donostia-San Sebastián, Museo San Telmo, 1989.
  • Euskal artea eta artistak 60ko hamarkadan = Arte y Artistas Vascos en los años 60 [Cat. exp.]. Donostia-San Sebastián, Gipuzkoako Foru Aldundia = Diputación Foral de Gipuzkoa, 1995. p. 270.
  • Adquisiciones 02/07 [Cat. exp.]. Bilbao, Museo de Bellas Artes de Bilbao, 2007. pp. 72-73, n° cat. 27.
  • Guía Artistas Vascos. Bilbao, Museo de Bellas Artes de Bilbao, 2008. pp. 141-142.
  • Gida Euskal Artistak. Bilbao, Bilboko Arte Eder Museoa, 2008. pp. 141-142.
  • Guide Basque Artists. Bilbao, Bilbao Fine Arts Museum, 2012. pp. 140-141, n° cat. 77a.
  • Viar, Javier. Historia del arte vasco : de la Guerra Civil a nuestros días, 1936-2016. Bilbao, Bilboko Arte Ederren Museoa-Museo de Bellas Artes de Bilbao, 2017. pp. 234-235, 353, il.
  • Después del 68 : arte y prácticas artísticas en el País Vasco, 1968-2018 [Cat. exp.]. Bilbao, Bilboko Arte Ederren Museoa-Museo de Bellas Artes de Bilbao, 2018. pp. 151, 294, il.
  • Mendiburu : materia y memoria [Cat. exp.]. Bilbao, Bilboko Arte Ederren Museoa = Museo de Bellas Artes de Bilbao, 2021. pp. 12, 42-43, 254, 269, 333, il.