EXHIBITION: Orekaren bila

Mikel Lertxundi
Orekaren bila
Sala Rekalde
Orekaren bila is an anthological exhibition that presents the plastic universe developed over the past three decades by Mikel Lertxundi through a selection of around thirty works. Without being a formal retrospective, the exhibition discovers the artist’s main lines of research, from the first examples in which he achieved a mature and identifiable language at the beginning of the 1980s, up to his most recent pieces, including five sculptures made specifically for Sala Rekalde.

Lertxundi has devoted his entire career to searching, through art, for the essence of nature based on three variants: earth, space and time. From a very early age, on his walks through stony mountains, woodlands and industrial areas, the artist from Berriatua began to interpret the traces that he found in the materials, in the atmosphere and in the landscapes with the aim of listening to the voice of the environment.

The sculptor defined his way of expression following his Discovery of stone, wood and iron, three materials deeply rooted in Basque traditional culture that make up a personal vision of nature by assigning each one the elements that are closest to them: stone leaves space for water, iron embraces fire and wood offers shelter to the wind.

Responding to the demands of each of the materials, Lertxundi uses basic and geometrical structures that he varies and blends, moving away from the serialisation of minimalism, as a means to access their essence and create specific plastic combinations and spaces. Three separate, supported and connected bodies, each with its own personality, converse with space as a moderator. At times, they are separated, looking at each other; other times, they support each other, in multiple piles; in the cubes, the three materials appear to be united, compact, which increases their complementarity and defines the union between them.

The drawings analyse the feelings that the volumes of sculptures in two dimensions can generate in the monumental space and in the timeless atmospheres. And the memory boxes are erected in containers of elements that each spectator must contemplate and close. All of the pieces make up a single skein: a pure, simple and resounding sculptural language, with a local identity and a universal character.

The existentialist tone that is derived from the material firmness and the formal simplicity requires contemplation and relaxed enjoyment. Viewing, tact, feeling, reflection. Meanwhile, in spite of suspecting the impossibility of the definitive balance, Mikel Lertxundi continues working on the search for hidden harmony –poetry– that is underlying in nature.


Mikel Lertxundi (Berriatua, 1951) has held many national and international solo exhibitions, among which those held at San Telmo Museum (San Sebastián, 1988), Bonnat Museum (Bayonne, 1989), Orgelfabrik Durlach (Karlsruhe, Germany, 1993), Lichthof des Alten Rathauses (Pforzheim, Germany, 1993), Adriana Schmidt Gallery (Cologne, Germany, 1998), Sala BBK (Bilbao, 2000), Orekaren bila (Zenarruza Monastery, 2007), Natura eta oreka (ARENATZarte Sculpture Park, Güeñes, 2009), Perspectiva y escala (Kur Gallery, San Sebastián, 2014) and Composiciones (Juan Manuel Lumbreras Gallery, Bilbao and Luis Burgos Gallery, Madrid, 2011) can be highlighted. In 2019, as part of the Loraldia festival, he displayed large-scale sculptures in seven different locations in Bilbao under the title of Elkarketak.

Among his group exhibitions, he has participated in Ertibil (1984), Gure Artea (1989), La memoria de los lugares (Guéthary Museum, 1991), Entre el objeto y el arte (Vanguardia Gallery, Bilbao, 1992), NICAF (Tokyo, Japan, 1995), FIA (Caracas, Venezuela, 1999), ART MIAMI (2002), ARCO (1999-2002) and European Sculpture Encounter (Montauban, France, 2005), KIAF (Seoul, South Korea, 2008) and Euskal zizelkariak Donibane Lohizunen (2018).

He has also made many public sculptures and artistic interventions in nature, such as Orekatik bizia (Ondarroa, 1994), Joan-etorrian (Paseo Marítimo, Zarautz, 1997), Toparri (Royal Victoria Country Park. Netley, Hampshire, England, 1997), Orekaren atea (Sobrellano Palace Park, Comillas, Cantabria, 2004), Begirada (El Soplao Caves Park, Cantabria, 2007), Elkarrentzat (Durango, 2007), Aisureta Space (Aulestia, 2009) Lurreko (Azurmendi, Larrabetzu, 2012) and Triada (Ziortza-Bolibar, 2015). His book, Lertxundi, arte universal en euskara won the Basque Government’s Euskadi Prize in 1989.
Opening: 18/07/2019 - 13/10/2019
From: 18/07/2019
Until: 13/10/2019
Schedule: Tuesday to Saturday: 10:00-14:00 and 17:00-20:30 Sundays and festives: 10:00-14:00
Location: Alameda Recalde 30, 48009 Bilbao


18/07/2019 - 13/10/2019


10:00 - 20:30


Sala Rekalde Art Gallery
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