BBK Art Route IV - Bilbao Fine Arts Museum


2023-05-22 • 2023-12-03

BBK Art Route IV

Perspectives of Bizkaia


The artistic outreach programme, the BBK Artearen Ibilbidea Art Route, launches its fourth season with a new travelling exhibition that, on this occasion, aims to showcase Bizkaia through 36 works by 30 artists from different periods in art history. By doing so, Perspectives of Bizkaia creates a ‘portrait’ of the region through artistic expression (32 paintings, three posters, two photographs and one collage) covering a broad period, from the later decades of the eighteenth century to the first ten years of the twenty-first century.

The images explore the iconography and geography of Bizkaia, from its rural settings, the Cantabrian coast and its ports (Bermeo, Elantxobe, Plentzia and El Abra), to the urban and industrial landscapes (Bilbao, Erandio and mining towns) of municipalities and regions such as Durango, Balmaseda, Gernik-Lumo, Busturialdea-Urdaibai. At the same time, human presence, paisanaje, in the words of Unamuno, merges with the landscape in activities that represent the idiosyncrasies of Bizkaia: the work of seafaring types, rural villagers and labourers, processions and mysticism, moments of leisure in religious pilgrimages and regattas, bowling games and bertsolarism. In other words, culture and history. A vast mosaic that spans everything from the idealised scenes of Luis Paret to the political denunciation of Agustín Ibarrola.

The programme’s broad chronology allows us to appreciate the personal perspectives of different artists, at times linked to the creative movements of each period, on the Basque landscape and its inhabitants.  

Sponsored by: BBK

Towns and cities where the exhibition will be

The programme relies on the collaboration of the councils of 28 towns and cities in Bizkaia, through which it will travel over the coming months (from May to November). The towns and cities hosting the initiative for one week each in accessible, outdoor public spaces include: Bilbao, Barakaldo, Muskiz, Portugalete, Valle de Trápaga-Trapagaran, Abanto-Zierbena (Las Carreras), Balmaseda, Getxo, Plentzia, Bermeo, Mundaka, Elantxobe, Nabarniz, Gernika-Lumo, Mungia, Gamiz-Fika, Erandio, Sestao, Bakio, Gordexola, Ugao-Miraballes, Basauri, Etxebarri, Lezama, Amorebieta-Etxano, Iurreta, Garai and Durango.

About mediation programme

Free mediation programme that includes guided tours for educational centres and cultural associations, and a service to answer the queries of visitors who come to see the exhibition. More info here.

Related artworks


Daniel Tamayo (1951)

Duranguesado, 1981

Oil on canvas. Acquired in 2002.

Tamayo created this sweeping panoramic view of the Duranguesado on three separate panels, judging from the discontinuity of the drawing. In the background, against a sky filled with flying objects, we can glimpse the mountains surrounding the county, which are dotted with fantastical constructions. The centre of each panel is the site of the main action, around which cluster a host of small figures and objects whose identity is uncertain, thus encouraging multiple interpretations. Bright colours in flat tones, geometric fantasy and precise drawing comprise the artistic universe of this artist trained at the Fine Arts Faculty of the UPV/EHU, where he currently teaches. 

Darío de Regoyos (1857-1913)

Santa Lucía, Durango, 1907

Oil on canvas. Acquired in 1924

Regoyos spent the spring and summer of 1907 in the town of Durango, in Vizcaya, where he moved to treat his bronchitis. The outcome of this sojourn was several landscapes of the town, like this view of Santa Lucía peak. The purplish tones of the sky and mountain, in contrast to the gardens in the foreground depicted with a broad palette of greens, help create the depth in the composition. The pointillist brushstrokes used to render the crops, the flocks of sheep and the small human figures are an outstanding example of the purest impressionism.

Fernando de Amárica (1866-1956)

Basque mysticism (Zeanuri), c. 1930

Oil on canvas. Donated by the artist in 1953

 Andra Mari church in the town of Zeanuri, Vizcaya, with the cemetery in front and cypresses reaching up to the sky, materialises the spirituality referred to in the title. The dim light descending in the background brings lyricism and serenity to this landscape that is clearly impressionistic, although line is also prominent. This treatment of light in the landscape is, in fact, what most keenly interested this painter and writer, who was initially trained at the Arts and Crafts School of Vitoria before travelling to Rome and Paris and studying with Joaquín Sorolla in Madrid. 

Jesus Mari Lazkano (1960) 

Bilbo MMX , 2010

Acrylic on canvas. Deposited by the Bilbao Town Hall in 2011

 From an imaginary glassed-in interior inhabited by a Chillida sculpture, we can see an idealised scenic view of Bilbao showing some of the architectural milestones featured in the story of its transformation. Several buildings that are indissolubly associated with this city’s image rise up midst the surrounding mountains and along the river. The elongated landscape format and large size of the work allowed Lazkano to masterfully render a spectacular view which he created with skilful lines and a hyper-realistic effect, yet the photographic quality does not shroud the work’s texture and painterly values. 

Luis Paret (1746-1799) 

View of El Arenal in Bilbao, c. 1783-1784

Oil on canvas. Deposited by the Provincial Council of Bilbao via BBV in 1996

 In this view of Bilbao’s El Arenal, Luis Paret captures the evening light using saturated colours and chiaroscuro. In the foreground, longshoremen and merchants are chatting or working amidst parcels and animals, with a glimpse of the flag of the Consulate of Bilbao. On the right, the tree-lined boulevard leads towards San Nicolás church, which is hidden. In the background are La Sendeja, the now-vanished Quintana Palace and the San Agustín convent, which used to stand on the land where the current Town Hall is located. On the left is Ripa quay. Paret, a contemporary of Goya, is affiliated with the Rococo aesthetic but was a pioneer of neoclassicism. 

Mari Puri Herrero (1942) 

Albia, 2002

Oil on canvas. Acquired in 2002

 The palm and plane trees and grass in the Albia gardens in Bilbao define the colour of this almost monochromatic image taken from Calle Colón in Larreategui, with figures that blur in the plant-filled surroundings. In the foreground, an individual is going down a lateral staircase, behind which the buildings near Plaza de San Vicente can be seen, one of them arcaded. Mari Puri Herrero, who won the Gure Artea award from the Basque government in 2022, imbues this urban scene with a fantastical atmosphere thanks to her personal narrative and blurry brushstrokes, which gradually dematerialise the forms. 

José María de Ucelay (1903-1979) 

Conversation Piece, cum tiffin or Urrutia y Aranoa, c. 1951

Oil on canvas. Acquired in 1956

  The Basque ceramic vessel in the foreground is inscribed with the names of the sitters. The briefcase, from which a palette and paintbrushes peek out, alludes to their profession. Jenaro Urrutia, on the left, was the president of the Association of Basque Artists between 1926 and 1929, while Juan de Aranoa, on the right, was one of the great Basque muralists. In the middle ground, the artist painted himself in this English-style double portrait, a kind of meta-painting set in Busturialdea. The lateral lighting brings an unrealistic feel to the scene and the landscape, a hallmark of Ucelay’s works. 

Manuel Losada (1865-1949) 

The rowers, c. 1912

Oil on canvas. Donated by Resurrección María de Azkue in 1945

Here, Manuel Losada, the museum’s director between 1914 and 1949, depicts a regatta at the mouth of the river in Guernica. In the background we can glimpse Ogoño peak and Laga beach, both of them bathed in the morning light of a summer day. The diagonal lines created by the fishing boat and the oars in the foreground bring movement to the scene, an effect which is enhanced by the elongated canvas. The photographic framing, the almost flat colours and the prominence of lines are inspired by impressionism and symbolism, which the author became familiar with on his sojourns in Paris. 

Antonio María Lecuona (1831-1907)

Basque customs, 1860

Donated by Gabriel María Guzmán Uribe in 2014 

A site on a mountain with glimpses of the sea is the setting of this pilgrimage presided over by a hermitage. The sky filters the light and is somewhat sombre for a supposedly idyllic scene, in which Lecuona describes what exemplified the customs of the Basque people to a nineteenth-century painter. He does indeed offer an outstanding description of archetypes—some even seem portrait-like—along with attitudes and social classes, inspired by the compositions of Teniers the Younger which he saw at the Prado and perhaps by the moralising verses of Antonio Trueba, who warned against these celebrations’ threat to morality.  

Anselmo Guinea (1855-1906) 

Easter blossom, 1899

Oil on canvas. Acquired in 2010

 The blossoming trees and virginal dresses of the young women express the explosion of nature that is the hallmark of this celebration and Guinea’s foray into impressionism through the pointillist technique. With an almost cinematographic effect, the artist situates this Easter Blossom procession—held on the Sunday of Christ’s resurrection—in a beautiful landscape with blue and purple tones in the background and vivid greens in the foreground, in front of which the red of the altar boys’ gowns stands out. The exact location is difficult to determine, but the men’s clothing point to Arratia Valley, where several of the painter’s works are set.  

José Benito Bikandi (1894-1958)

Port of Bermeo, 1949

 Oil on canvas. Acquired in 1950

The Ondarroa native José Benito Bikandi painted this perspective of Bermeo from Benanzio Nardiz quay, with the tower of Santa Eufemia church in the background. The image, with its hints of expressionism and fauvism, differs from the current view, but on the left you can see a pavilion with an arcaded area and houses that still stand today. Bikandi began to train as an artist in Bilbao and later continued his training in Madrid, Paris and Rome. He moved to Buenos Aires in 1926, where he developed his facet as a potter, and in 1937 he won the gold medal at the Paris International Exposition.  

Luis Paret (1746-1799) 

View of Bermeo, 1783

Oil on copper. Acquired through the patronage of BBK and the contribution of Friends of the museum in 2017

This is the first of several views of the Basque coastline that Paret painted during his exile in Bilbao. He captured the ‘Old Port’ of Bermeo at low tide, viewed from Benanzio Nardiz quay. On the left, you can glimpse Santa Eufemia church with its tower under construction, in the centre is the Ercilla house-tower and on the right is Santa María de la Atalaya in ruins. Meant to decorate the House of the Prince along with another view of the same town in a squall, it is painted on copper with an exquisite finish that almost photographically depicts the landscape and idealised figures. 

Antonio de Guezala (1889-1956)

Elantxobe, 1924

Oil on canvas. Bilbao Fine Arts Museum

 The sinuous line of the steep streets and the layout of the houses turn the town of Elantxobe into a cubist scene, expressed in a tempered fashion within the Art Deco aesthetic. The slightly inclined vertical lines and the undulating staircases give the illusion of movement and bring the buildings to life. Even the colours are somewhat idealised. Guezala presided over the Association of Basque Artists in 1917 and can be considered one of the most avant-garde artists of his era, who assimilated trends like futurism. He also cultivated poster art and photography, and indeed a photograph may be the source of this painting. 

José Antonio de Ormaolea (1912-1984)

Port of Elantxobe, 1984

Oil on canvas. Acquired in 1985

Born in Elantxobe, Ormaolea repeatedly painted this town from different perspectives. In this case, he painted a general view, but the layout of the quays is distorted as if he were looking at it through a wide-angle lens. This effect and the unreal colours may reflect the fact that the artist was working from sketches or photographs more than from life. He captured geometric shapes and flat, contrasting colours with gentle modelling and achieved a formal synthesis similar to metaphysical painting. Ormaolea was a self-taught painter who found his vocation late in life and only began to exhibit his works in 1971. He made this work the year he died. 

Ricardo Toja (1932-2012)

Houses in Plencia, 1982

Oil on canvas. Acquired in 1983

The straight lines of the constructions and the curves of the plants contrast with each other in this work featuring precise drawing. The fields of clean colours captured with the pointillist technique provide vibrating colours and qualities of light verging on impressionism with which Ricardo Toja conveys the quiet life in the coastal town of Plentzia, where he moved permanently in 1992. After starting his training as an artist with Fernando Maidagan, in 1951 he participated in the Joven Pintura Bilbaína group and he studied in Oslo in the 1960s with a grant from the Provincial Council of Vizcaya. His works reference Paul Cézanne and Giorgio Morandi, among others. 

Anselmo Guinea (1855-1906) 

Hoeing the weeds, 1893

Oil on canvas. Donated by María del Carmen de Icaza Zabálburu in 20211

The same year he painted this work—most likely from real-life—Guinea displayed it in Ángel Velasco’s Espejería, on Calle del Víctor in Bilbao. After getting his start in historical and costumbrist painting, here he verges on impressionism due to Guiard’s influence, which signalled his entry into modernity. A group of workers is weeding the ground, which is rendered in the same blue tones as the mountains in the background. The green of the vegetation stands out in contrast. The perspective achieved by the placement of the corn stalks and the people, with their red caps, creates depth and directs our eyes to the Murueta plain in the background.   

José María de Ucelay (1903-1979) 

Playing bowls in San Bartolomé, c. 1935

Oil on canvas. Acquired in 1983

In this playful scene, Ucelay evokes the landscape in the Biosphere Reserve of Urdaibai, where he spent much of his life. However, he painted it in his studio in Paris, which partly explains the unreal feel emanating from this imagined work. The scale of the bowls in the foreground makes them reminiscent of menhirs, while the mountains seem to float with the clouds. The painter repeatedly painted this type of sky in his works from this period. All these elements are like a synthesis of surrealism and magical realism which result in a dreamlike image brimming with questions and suggestions.  

Antonio de Guezala (1889-1956) 

The Abra beaches, c. 1927

Colour lithograph on paper. Acquired in 1987

The National Tourism Board published this poster to promote the beaches of Portugalete and Getxo. With an aesthetic verging on futurism and cubism, Guezala captures a group of figures in the foreground that resemble fashion plates. This makes for a fun, relaxed yet elegant and modern image thanks to the presence of the car, a reflection of the Roaring Twenties. Behind them are Ereaga beach with the Igeretxe spa-casino, beach cabins, umbrellas and Arriluce quay. The scene closes with sloops, Las Arenas beach and the town of Portugalete and the Suspension Bridge.  

Julián de Tellaeche (1884-1957)

The white ship´s boy, c.1922-1924

Oil on cardboard. Acquired in 1928

 The confusion and clutter depicted in the work are actually part of a carefully planned geometric composition with photographic framing. The dry-looking colour, applied on cardboard—which is visible in several spots—is laid down with energetic brushstrokes similar to French post-impressionism. The shipboy is an idealisation of the Basque sailor, an archetype who, in this particular painting, inspires tenderness while ignoring the drama of child labour. Tellaeche lived in Lekeitio and was trained in Madrid and Paris. He emigrated to France during the Spanish Civil War and moved to Peru in 1952, where he was appointed Curator of the National Artistic Treasure. 

Valentín de Zubiaurre (1879-1963)

For the victims of the sea, 1914

Oil on canvas. Contributed by the Provincial Council of Vizcaya in 1919

In this solemn scene, the forward-facing figures comprise a sampling of archetypes. The deep blue that dominates the painting is one of the artist’s hallmarks and contrasts with the warm tones of the liturgical elements and flesh tones. The houses in the background stretch down to a bridge reminiscent of the one in Ondarroa. Valentín de Zubiaurre was trained at the San Fernando Fine Arts School, travelled around Europe, where he made contact with modernism, and chose costumbrist themes from the Basque Country and Castile, to which he added a dose of symbolic values. He won the medal of honour at the National Fine Arts Exhibition in 1957. 

Alberto Arrue (1878-1944)

Basque fishermen, 1918

Oil on canvas. Acquired in 1931

 The view of a fishing village, probably an imaginary one, brings continuity to a composition that is divided by the oar and shows two idealised worlds: the man is gazing into infinity, as if he were thinking about epic deeds, while the woman is posing sinuously and elegantly with an enigmatic expression on her face. The bulk of the story falls on the fisherman, whose red kaiku coat stands out powerfully in this work, while the woman’s light skin and eyes provide a colour contrast. Alberto, the eldest of the Arrue brothers, was the first president of the Association of Basque Artists. He painted Basque themes and made illustrations, engravings, theatre sets and outstanding portraits. 

Ricardo Arrue (1889-1978)

Harbour, c.1932

Oil on canvas. Acquired in 1932

 The steam-powered fishing vessels in the foreground are projected over a forced perspective, as if they were captured via a photographic lens. The direction of the smokestacks reinforces that impression, and their colours contribute to balancing the colouring in the work. In the background is a glimpse of the Old Bridge in Ondarroa, through whose arches spectators can spy the New Bridge. The clearly defined, rhythmic drawing and the flat colour fields with soft modelling resemble the technique of enamelling, which was a speciality of Ricardo, the third of the four Arrue brothers. All of this reveals the influence of cubism and gives the painting an appealing modernity.  

Julián de Tellaeche (1884-1957)

Jib-boom, c.1921-1924

Oil on cardboard Contributed by the Provincial Council of Bizkaia in 1924

 The world of the sea is the exclusive theme of the paintings by Tellaeche, a sailor and artist from Lekeitio, one of whose referents are sailboats moored at the port. In this work influenced by Cézanne, the jib boom of a boat bisects the composition diagonally, and cables, hawsers and chains run in all directions, creating a great deal of dynamism. Tellaeche’s interest in photography—he opened a studio in Bilbao in 1911—explains the fragmentary framing. All of this, coupled with the impressionistic brushstrokes and colours and a busy and apparently chaotic composition, bring the work close to abstract expressionism and places the painter in the artistic vanguard of his era.

Celso Lagar (1891-1966)

Port of Bilbao , c.1917-1918

Oil on canvas. Acquired in 1996

 The way this work is made is reminiscent of a collage, with elements that refer literally to the river and Bilbao, while others refer to sailing, work and factory and iron constructions. They are all expressed in bright colours with rhythmic lines and a dense composition that conveys the action and speed of industrial Bilbao. Lagar started his artistic career as a sculptor, but he soon turned to painting and created a movement that he called ‘planismo’. This work synthesises different avant-gardes from the early twentieth century, like futurism, orphism and fauvism. 

Adolfo Guiard (1860-1916)

Country girl with a red carnation, 1903

Oil on canvas. Contributed by the Provincial Council of Vizcaya in 1913

 The girl’s youthfulness and direct gaze represent the future and progress of a society that still contains echoes of the past—the elderly woman behind her—but is undergoing a profound transformation, also expressed in the merchant ships plying the river in the background. The scene is set in Elorrieta, in front of the Rekurti farmhouse, where the girl was born. After engaging with impressionism and symbolism in Paris, Guiard became an avant-garde in his generation and had a significant influence over other Basque artists. The hallmarks of his works are luminous colours dominated by blue and the treatment of the lines, which is indebted to Japanese art. 

Inocencio Asarta (1861-1921)

Pickling factory, 1903

Oil on canvas. Bequest of Laureano de Jado in 1927

 After being trained in Paris, this painter from Navarra moved to Bilbao in 1900 and earned renown there for his portraits of the local bourgeoisie. He embarked on his relationship with the coast of Vizcaya in 1903—and married a woman from Ondarroa in 1905—and his scenes devoted to the life of seafarers date from between then and 1906. They imbue his works with a kind of fin-de-siècle academicism and an aesthetic resembling that of Velázquez, as seen in this composition, which is based on The Spinners. The bituminous colours and reflections off the wet spots on the ground and the fish suggest an unhealthy atmosphere where a woman is nursing a child. 

Aurelio Arteta (1879-1940)

The bridge at Burceña, c.1920-1930

Oil on canvas. Acquired in 1940

 A section of the iron bridge built by the engineer Adolfo Ibarreta in 1876 and destroyed during the Spanish Civil War is the repeated module that suggests frozen time, like a still in a film sequence. The diamond shape frames the diagonal lines of the river and the railing, as well as the vertical lines of the houses rendered with a cubist aesthetic, creating an extraordinarily balanced composition. The figure with his back turned towards us, the drinking horse and the boat evoke a slow, melancholy scene which confer a metaphysical sense to the urban scene set between Barakaldo and Zorroza.

Roberto Rodet (1915-1989)

San Severino square, Valmaseda, 1975

Oil on board. Fundación Banco BBK 

An example of the post-impressionist scene indebted to Cézanne, which characterised this artist, this panel is a view from Plaza Mayor of San Severino Gothic church and the Town Hall of Balmaseda, Rodet Villa’s birthplace, where he also served as mayor. A student of Ángel Larroque and Federico Sáenz at the Art and Crafts School of Bilbao, he joined the Grupo del Suizo (later the Asociación Artística Vizcaína) in 1941. He specialised in murals, and his most celebrated works include his sketches for the decoration of Arantzazu basilica and a mural for the former Municipal Library of Balmaseda. He also designed sets for plays and ballets.  

Gabriele Basilico (1944-2013)

The river [Axpe, Erandio], 1993

Silver gelatine bromide on paper. Donated by Bilbao Metrópoli-30 in 1997

This 1993 image belongs to a set of 86 pictures resulting from an institutional commission to six prestigious photographers. The goal was to document the industrial, urban and human landscape of Bilbao and its environ given the process of economic and social regeneration that was underway at that time. The photographers chosen included Gabriele Basilico, who was known as ‘the city photographer’ because of his interest in the transformation of the urban environment. The framing chosen for this photograph creates a mathematical composition in which lightness and heaviness alternate to bring balance and visual order to the industrial ecosystem, which is so often chaotic.

Juan José Landa (1898-1941)

Mine landscape, c.1920-1921

Oil on canvas. Contributed by the Provincial Council of Vizcaya in 1922

 This is one of the few works by this painter still conserved, which can be explained by his lengthy mental illness and his family’s lack of support for his vocation as an artist. He only painted mine landscapes and the garden of the estate that the portraitist Enrique Salazar owned in Deusto. On this canvas, a solitary tree rises up, dividing the composition into two halves against an unrealistic landscape with fauvist colours painted with energetic, expressive brushstrokes. It was acquired for the museum by the Provincial Council of Vizcaya at the exhibition that the Association of Basque Artists held in 1922 on the occasion of the Third Congress of Basque Studies. 

Patxi Cobo (1953)

Untitled (Landscape 48), 1990

Original copy by the artist. Acquired in 1990 

Since 1982, Patxi Cobo has been interested in using photography to capture the landscape of Vizcaya. His work has focused on the mining basin that encompasses Gallarta, La Arboleda and Ortuella, as well as the metamorphosis Bilbao has undergone in recent decades, which is also reflected in the architecture of the Fine Arts Museum, whose collection contains several of his works. This photograph comes from a series of 49 works set in natural spaces in Trapagaran, although it could have been taken anywhere else. Cobo’s eye brings a magical feel to the image, which seems to lyrically express that only nature endures and transcends us. 

Nicolás Martínez Ortiz de Zárate (1907-1990)

Exhibition of/ Industry and Trade / Agost 1934 Bilbao , 1934

Colour lithograph on paper Bilbao Town Hall, Provincial Council of Vizcaya and Basque government

 The Miguel de Unamuno Institute of Bilbao hosted annual industry and trade exhibitions from 1932 until the Spanish Civil War. In this advertising poster, a view through the bower running around the courtyard, with the octagonal tower at one corner, serves as a background for Hermes, the patron of merchants and travellers, who is carrying not only his staff but also a cogwheel. Behind the text, the coat-of-arms of Bilbao can be glimpsed. A representative of the Art Deco aesthetic, Ortiz de Zárate was trained at the Arts and Crafts School of Bilbao and at Paris’s La Grand Chaumière between 1924 and 1928. In addition to being a painter and muralist, he was also an illustrator, engraver and poster artist. 

José Arrue (1885-1977)

Basque pilgrimage festival, 1921

Oil on board. Acquired in 1921

 José Arrue shows an optimistic vision of the peasant world in his paintings depicting pilgrimage festivals, with figures from different social echelons intermingling cordially in a kind of social tabula rasa. Here, the wonderfully shaded colours are arranged on flat fields bounded by precise lines that define something resembling a stage flanked by trees. The brother of his fellow painters Alberto, Ricardo and Ramiro, José was trained at the Arts and Crafts School of Bilbao and Paris’s La Grand Chaumière. He contributed his drawings to many publications, like El Coitao, and participated in creating the Association of Basque Artists in 1911. 

José Ramón Morquillas (1947)

The intellectuals of my village, 2001

Collage on cardboard. Acquired in 2002 

The central collage formally connects with José Arrue’s pilgrimage festivals, and the work as a whole does so with the irony of a Ramón de Zubiaurre painting also in the museum, whose title is similar to this one by Morquillas. An invitation to observation and reflection, the most cutting-edge architecture appears alongside a hermitage, and the naked bodies mingle with the liturgical vestments. The affected, minute facture does not conceal the implacable—if not aggressive—criticism of our society, expressed in the disturbing elements (cockroach and gun) painted in the empty space on either side; instead, it even highlights the contradictions that the artist sarcastically condemns. 

Alberto Arrue (1878-1944)

Poster for the Third Congress of Basque Studies, Gernika, 1922

Colour lithograph on paper. Donated by the Roda-Arrue family in memory of Resu Arrue in 2015

 Alberto Arrue made several sketches for this poster, one of which is also conserved at the museum. It was used to advertise the 1922 Third Congress of Basque Studies on language and culture, which included activities like the Exhibition of Fine Arts and Costumes of the Country. The scene is set in an arcade, and in the background we can glimpse the Assembly House and the Tree of Guernica. In the foreground, a man is reading the charter and his daughter is carrying a prayer book, according to the interpretation that appeared in El Liberal newspaper, which published the poster. Thus, culture and religion merged, which was common at this type of event. 

Agustín Ibarrola (1930)

Guernica, c.1977

Oil on canvas. Acquired in 2021

 Before joining the collection in 2021, this mural was displayed in the museum twice in the late 1970s. In it, Ibarrola depicts the most iconic elements of Picasso’s original—the horse, the woman carrying a child in her arms, the dead soldier—and reinterprets and adapts them to his artistic universe. Thus, he includes blood red, which enhances the violence of this scene, in which the forces of public order are being used against the city. The prison bars, expressed through lines in different directions organising the space, allude to the oppression waged by the Franco dictatorship.