26 June - 3 January 2022
Hauser & Wirth, Somerset, UK.
One of the foremost Spanish sculptors of the twentieth century, Eduardo Chillida (1924 – 2002) is widely celebrated for his monumental public sculptures and enduring fascination with interconnected shape, space and organic form. Chillida challenged the constraints of materials such as iron and steel to redefine the language of postwar sculpture, drawing on a deep connection to his native Basque region. Chillida’s public sculptures were commissioned globally and he travelled extensively to Paris, Greece, Umbria, Tuscany, Rome and Provence, each informing new artistic paths.
Hauser & Wirth will present a significant body of sculptural works and drawings displayed throughout the original farm buildings and surrounding outdoor landscape in Somerset. The exhibition will invite new encounters between Chillida’s work and the unique environment of Hauser & Wirth Somerset, drawing parallels with the artist’s own vision for Chillida Leku, a public museum and sculpture park created during his lifetime that expanded the relationship between art and nature. Large and medium-sized sculptures of granite, chamotte clay and iron, will be on view throughout the Threshing Barn, Pigsty and Workshop galleries. The sculptural presentation will be complemented by a selection of paper works, including suspended Gravitations and figurative drawings verging on abstraction.
Hauser & Wirth supported the reopening of Chillida Leku in 2019 in order to share the artist’s life and practice with wider audiences, working closely with Chillida’s family and the local community to preserve the artist’s legacy. This will be the first cultural exchange project of its kind with the museum and the gallery in the UK, including a collaborative education and events programme over an extended six-month period.
Installation view, ‘Eduardo Chillida’, Hauser & Wirth Somerset, 2021. Courtesy The Estate of Eduardo Chillida © Zabalaga Leku. San Sebastián, VEGAP (2021). Photo: Ken Adlard
Chillida is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Grand International Sculpture Prize at the Venice Biennale in 1958; the Carnegie Prize for Sculpture in 1964; the Andrew Mellon Prize in 1978; and the Jack Goldhill Award from the Royal Academy of Arts in London in 1996. In 2000, the Chillida-Leku Museum, a monographic exhibition space devoted to the artist, opened in San Sebastián, Spain. Chillida died in San Sebastián on August 19, 2002.
Chillida’s public sculptures are prominently displayed internationally, including Spain, Germany, France and the US. Recent solo museum exhibitions of Chillida’s work include: ‘Memory, Mind, Matter: The Sculpture of Eduardo Chillida’, Meadows Museum, Dallas, Texas, US (2018); ‘Chillida’, Museo de Arte e Historia de Durango, Durango, Spain (2018), ‘Art and Space’, Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Spain, (2018); ‘Eduardo Chillida, Gravitación’, Musée des Abattoirs, Toulouse, France (2018). ‘Eduardo Chillida’, Wiesbaden Museum, Wiesbaden, Germany (2018) and ‘Chillida in the Rijksmuseum Gardens’, The Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam (2018).