Eduardo Chillida, Year 1963. Photo: Budd, N.Y. © 2017 Zabalaga – Leku, Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / VEGAP, Madrid
Related Show Highlights Chillida’s Connections to Dallas
Dallas, TX – February 1, 2018 – This spring, the Meadows Museum will present Dallas’s first exhibition dedicated exclusively to the work of Eduardo Chillida (1924–2002). Chillida, one of Spain’s most celebrated modern sculptors, is famous for his monumental iron and stone sculptures that shape both urban and rural landscapes. This exhibition includes 66 of the artist’s works, from his sculptures, to his drawings, collages, gravitations, graphic works, and a selection of his books. Co-curated by William Jeffett, chief curator of exhibitions for The Dalí Museum, and Ignacio Chillida, the artist’s son, the works in Memory, Mind, Matter: The Sculpture of Eduardo Chillida come exclusively from the Museo Chillida-Leku in Hernani (San Sebastián, Spain); the exhibition travels to Dallas from the Salvador Dalí Museum in St. Petersburg, Florida. A complimentary exhibition, Chillida in Dallas: De Musica at the Meyerson, is curated by Meadows/Mellon/Prado Curatorial Fellow Amanda W. Dotseth and will focus on the landmark commission by Chillida at Dallas’s Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center. The two exhibitions will open on February 4, 2018, and run through June 3.
Memory, Mind, Matter: The Sculpture of Eduardo Chillida focuses on the mature part of Chillida’s career, when he produced works such as Peine del Viento XV (Wind Comb) in 1976 and Elogio del Horizonte (Eulogy to the Horizon) in 1990, while also presenting important, rarely displayed works. The exhibition addresses the artist’s interest in space and form, which is anchored to the human body and to organic elements found in nature. His works express both the power of nature and humanity’s physical strength. Instead of seeing his works as abstract—an idea Chillida rejected—the exhibition demonstrates his connection to the pre-war avant-garde’s interest in human subjectivity and its poetic notions of form. The exhibition also includes a reflection on the artist’s engagement with poetry and philosophy in his artists’ books, and his admiration for writers of the period.
Chillida is also celebrated for the variety of media used in his works, including iron, stone, ceramic, alabaster and paper. His iron and steel sculptures are made of solid metal, while his alabaster works are made from a single piece of stone. His works on paper, known as gravitations, include the layering of pages to create a collage, creating an effect of shadows, weight and tension between the paper. Additionally, the pieces of paper are stitched together, which creates a contrast of negative and positive space in the cut outs. In connection to his Basque roots, Chillida’s works evoke interlocking fingers, arms and hands. He saw hands as an instrument for interaction with the earth: they are how the artist holds and shapes his materials. Eduardo Chillida’s use of natural forms in connection with the Basque country is best described in the artist’s own words: “In my Basque Country I feel at home, like a tree that is adapted to its territory, rooted in its earth but with its arms open to the world.”
“Eduardo Chillida is well-known to our community, by sight if not by name, as Dallas is fortunate to be home to one of his most important public sculptures,” said Mark Roglán, the Linda P. and William A. Custard Director of the Meadows Museum. “This exhibition shows Chillida’s different sides through his visionary use of materials, from the power of stone to the lightness of paper. We are thrilled to bring these works to Dallas and expand our understanding of one of the most important and influential modern Spanish sculptors.”
Chillida in Dallas: De música at the Meyerson, explores the monumental sculpture located in front of the Morton H. Myerson Symphony Center in Dallas. Chillida was selected for the commission by the Dallas Symphony Foundation Arts Committee, in close consultation with architect and Committee member I.M. Pei. What resulted was the impressive De música, Dallas XV (On Music, Dallas XV), which contains two imposing 15-foot-high cylinders of more than 3 feet in diameter, with commanding and elegant arm-like extensions. The work embodies Chillida’s artistic philosophy, his interest in Saint Augustine (after whose treatise on music the sculpture is named), and in the mystical number three. De música is the only public work by Chillida on display in Dallas and represents a dialogue between Chillida and architect I. M. Pei, who designed the Symphony Center’s glass and granite building.
Memory, Mind, Matter: The Sculpture of Eduardo Chillida will be accompanied by a catalogue with full color illustrations of the 66 works by Eduardo Chillida in the exhibition, along with an introduction by the artist’s son Ignacio Chillida, and essays by Hank Hine (Director of The Dalí Museum), Nausica Sanchez (Fundación Eduardo Chillida-Pilar Belzunce), and William Jeffett. The catalogue includes the artist’s biography, use of media, distinctive motifs, and artists’ books.
Chillida-related educational programming for the spring will include:
Friday, February 2, 10:30 a.m.
LECTURE: Memory, Mind, Matter: The Public Art of Eduardo Chillida in Focus
Luis Chillida, director, Fundación Eduardo Chillida-Pilar Belzunce
Friday, February 16, 12:15 p.m.
GALLERY TALK: Medieval and Modern: Alabaster from Gil de Siloé to Eduardo Chillida
Amanda W. Dotseth, Meadows/Mellon/Prado curatorial fellow, Meadows Museum
Thursday, April 19, 6:00-7:00 p.m.
LECTURE: Lightness and Rightness: Eduardo Chillida and James Johnson Sweeney in the Museum of
Fine Arts, Houston
Beatriz Cordero, professor, Saint Louis University, Madrid
Friday, April 20, 12:15 p.m.
GALLERY TALK: Chillida in Dallas Part I: Chillida Downtown
Jed Morse, chief curator, Nasher Sculpture Center
Saturday, April 21, 10:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m.
Friday, April 27, 12:15 p.m.
GALLERY TALK: Chillida in Dallas Part II: Chillida in Dallas
Scott Winterrowd, director of education, Meadows Museum
Born in San Sebastián, Spain, in the Basque region, Eduardo Chillida’s works are international, located in Spain, Europe, and the Americas. Throughout his career, Chillida debuted exhibitions at The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and Museum of Modern Art in New York, including retrospectives at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (1966), and the Carnegie Institute in Pittsburgh (1979). He received several awards, including the Graham Foundation Award for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts, the International Grand Prize for Sculpture at the Venice Biennale, both in 1958; the Kandinsky Prize in 1960; and the Carnegie Prize in 1964 and in 1979, shared with painter Willem de Kooning.
This exhibition is co-organized by The Dalí Museum and Fundación Eduardo Chillida–Pilar Belzunce, in collaboration with the Meadows Museum, SMU, Dallas. Additional support for the Meadows Museum’s presentation is generously provided by The Meadows Foundation.
About the Fundación Eduardo Chillida–Pilar Belzunce
All works presented in Memory, Mind, Matter: The Sculpture of Eduardo Chillida have been graciously loaned by the Fundación Eduardo Chillida–Pilar Belzunce. The foundation was created in 2000 and is based in Hernani, Spain. The foundation was formed with the purpose to “deepen the knowledge of the artistic work of Mr. Eduardo Chillida Juantegui, promoting its knowledge and dissemination.” The foundation is connected with the Museo Chillida-Leku which opened in 2000. The museum showcases the largest collection of Eduardo Chillida’s work and provides an intimate space for visitors to enjoy the works of this great, modern sculptor.
About the Meadows Museum
The Meadows Museum is the leading U.S. institution focused on the study and presentation of the art of Spain. In 1962, Dallas businessman and philanthropist Algur H. Meadows donated his private collection of Spanish paintings, as well as funds to start a museum, to Southern Methodist University. The museum opened to the public in 1965, marking the first step in fulfilling Meadows’s vision to create “a small Prado for Texas.”
Today, the Meadows is home to one of the largest and most comprehensive collections of Spanish art outside Spain. The collection spans from the 10th to the 21st centuries and includes medieval objects, Renaissance and Baroque sculptures, and major paintings by Golden Age and modern masters. Since 2010 the museum has been engaged in a multidimensional partnership with the Museo Nacional del Prado in Madrid, which has included the exchange of scholarship, exhibitions, works of art, and other resources.
https://meadowsmuseumdallas.org 5900 Bishop Blvd., Dallas, TX 75205