TOLOSA AND ITS LEGACY
Tolosa account for its geographical location and its history, with a unique cultural legacy that can be glimpsed in what has been the evolution of its inhabitants in the face of the vicissitudes and events that in the course of time life has been subjecting them. Becoming, that, from our particularity and always immersed in the frameworks and vagaries of Western history and culture have determined our urban structure, architecture, rural world, industry, and also our world of values, thought, ways of life, cultural creation of the inhabitants of the village; that economically, politically, socially and culturally it has printed a deep imprint on our territory.
The inherited cultural heritage shapes our collective memory. It is our intention to develop this heritage from the perspective of contemporary artistic intervention in the public spaces of Tolosa, generating a scenario of reflection and praxis of public art.
In the 20th century, the installation of public sculpture as a communication system of great impact began to generalize, with the purpose of commemorating ephemerides, promoting political and religious ideas, honouring people whose virtues are conventionally admitted as meritorious, trying to affect citizens.
After the radical socio-political conflicts that shake the history of the twentieth century there is a prolonged uncertainty and cultural apathy from which little by little it wakes up in its last third, with initiative. On the initiative of private enthusiasts and also groups of citizens independent of the administration, they begin to promote activities of cultural creation such as literature, dance, music, plastic arts, conferences, etc. In this context, activities that specifically focus on visual creation arise, such as the exhibitions of contemporary Basque artists within the Basque cultural days at the beginning of the 70s (Lizardi Elkartea); and the samples of contemporary Basque sculpture and Gipuzkoan painting during the 80s (CIT).
With these precedents, a group of citizens emerged from a private initiative, not official, creates the commission of sculpture of the CIT of Tolosa in order to develop a permanent exhibition of contemporary Basque sculpture. Its objective is to provide the villa with contemporary artistic heritage of a public nature (see DVD and book “Sculptures for a people”).
In this way between 1994 and 2006, fulfilling the idea of Oteiza, several sculptures of contemporary Basque artists have been placed in Tolosa, integrating them into public spaces, after previous studies of location, scale design, and theme by artists. These artistic interventions add to their aesthetic value an allegorical sense referring to issues that define individual and collective existence
Thus, the struggle for life, work and the dialectic man-man / man nature appear in “GOLDEA” by Nestor Basterretxea. Spacetime, metaphysics and transcendent meaning do it in Jorge Oteiza’s “ATAUTS”. Collective memory, language and thought as archetypal cultural creations preserved to be transmitted “OROIMENAREN GAZTELUA” by Ricardo Ugarte.
The bull and the mythology, the carnival as a transgression of conventions and collective catharsis in the vital explosion of spring, in the piece by Tomas Hernandez Mendizabal. The game of the ball and reflection on space in “AIREAN” by Jose Ramón Anda. Being, nature, matter and space in “LIZARDIREN LEOIAK” by Eduardo Chillida. An intertwining between spiritualities of Western and Eastern culture in “KANTU IXILA (improvised pastoral humming from Zuberoa) by Koldobika Jauregi.