Homenaje a la gente trabajadora. Agustín Ibarrola. Rialia. Industria museoa.

Tribute to the workers. Agustín Ibarrola


Agustín Ibarrola Goicoechea (Basauri, 1930)

Sculptor and painter in a workerist style and factory aesthetic, he trained in the workshop of Daniel Vázquez Díaz until 1955. In Paris, he founded Team 57 and published the “Manifesto of Interactivity”. After returning to Bilbao in 1961, he created the Basque engravers “Estampa Popular” group with Franciska Dapena and more artists to make visual arts creation an element of critical activism and social denunciation. He created with Jorge Oteiza the cultural movement Gaur Emen, Orain, Danok intending to raise awareness of Basque culture, and gathered a large number of artists of different ages and trends to create a University of Basque Artists.

Some of his works, as an artistic development of his political ideology inscribed within social art, are “El Bosque de Oma” (The Forest of Oma), “Las traviesas del Ruhr” (The Railroad Ties of the Ruhr), “Los trabajadores de la siderurgia en Reinosa” (The Workers of the Steel Industry in Reinosa) “Ola a ritmo de txalaparta” (Wave to the Rhythm of Txalaparta) in Chamartín, “Hombro con hombro” (Shoulder to Shoulder) in the former Babcock Wilcox, and  “Los personajes chimeneas” (The Chimney Characters) in Barakaldo.

The work with railroad ties, such as this totem donated to Rialia, evokes the roads that the train has travelled and the villages it has united. In Portugalete we also have since 1989 the “Casa del Hierro” (House of Iron), located at the junction of Ugaldebieta, in front of the Triano mountains.


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