A WALK THROUGH THE MU­SEUMS OF BIL­BAO

Arte por Excelencias - - España -

Cur­rently, the city of Bil­bao is one of the most in­flu­en­ti­al ar­tis­tic epi­cen­ters of the Spa­nish Sta­te, mostly sin­ce the Gug­gen­heim Mu­se­um was inau­gu­ra­ted in 1997, which to­get­her with the Mu­se­um of Fi­ne Arts form the most im­por­tant mu­se­um bi­no­mi­al of the Bis­cayan ca­pi­tal. Both ins­ti­tu­ti­ons are very clo­se, only se­pa­ra­ted by gar­dens and lo­ca­ted next to the Ner­vi­ón Ri­ver. I had the op­por­tu­nity to vi­sit the city last la­te De­cem­ber; I wan­ted to see so­me of the re­cent ex­hi­bi­ti­ons of­fe­red by both mu­seums. It was the Ar­cim­bol­do, Las flo­ras y la pri­ma­ve­ra by Edu­ar­do Arroyo, Le retour des croisades, at the Mu­se­um of Fi­ne Arts, and David Hockney, Oc­hen­ta y dos re­tra­tos y un bodegón, in the Gug­gen­heim Mu­se­um ex­hi­bi­ti­ons. In Ar­cim­bol­do, Las flo­ras y la pri­ma­ve­ra by Mi­la­ne­se pain­ter Gius­sep­pe Ar­cim­bol­do (1526-1593), three works are ex­hi­bi­ted that are in Spa­nish collec­ti­ons, being the first ti­me that all can be se­en to­get­her. One of the main con­tri­bu­ti­ons of Ar­cim­bol­do to the world of art is the sin­gu­la­rity of re­pre­sen­ting hu­man or alle­go­ri­cal fi­gu­res through the in­cor­po­ra­ti­on of a mul­ti­tu­de of ob­jects, fruits, flowers, shells and ani­mals in the por­traits.

The ex­hi­bi­ti­on of Edu­ar­do Arroyo (Ma­drid, 1937) oc­cu­pi­es se­ve­ral ro­oms of the mu­se­um. It is a lar­ge ex­hi­bit with mo­re than forty pi­e­ces, in­clu­ding pain­ting, drawing and sculp­tu­re, with a very uni­que tech­ni­que, alt­hough co­lla­ges from pho­to­graphs are al­so pre­sent.

When one con­tem­pla­tes David Hockney, Oc­hen­ta y dos re­tra­tos y un bodegón, one fe­els ab­so­lu­tely se­du­ced by it, both by the lo­oks of the cha­rac­ters who se­em to be ob­ser­ving us, and by the chro­ma­tic rich­ness that each of the por­traits gi­ve off. In fact, as a who­le, it se­ems that the ar­tist wan­ted to ex­hi­bit an enor­mous polyptych

di­vi­ded in­to eighty frag­ments, alt­hough in fact he pain­ted ni­nety por­traits and here only eighty-two are ex­hi­bi­ted, which fill the who­le ro­om.

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