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Bienal Internacional de Arquitectura

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Bilbao rescues the figure of Galíndez, a precursor of rationalist architecture with recognisable buildings in the city

  • Organised by the architectural culture association Arkupe, it focuses on his figure and his most important urban buildings between the 1930s and 1950s.
  • Manuel I. Galíndez, arquitecto' will be on display at the Bizkaia Aretoa for 9 days until 21 November, when it will travel to Madrid and then to the United States.
  • This afternoon, the Bizkaia Aretoa will also host a double session of international conferences with 6a Architects from London and the Swiss Christian Kerez.

The Basque Country International Biennial of Architecture  Mugak/ presented today the exhibition 'Manuel I. Galíndez, architect'. It is dedicated to the figure and work of the Bilbao professional, one of the most outstanding in the country in the first half of the 20th century. Organised by the architectural culture association Arkupe, it will be on display at the Bizkaia Aretoa until 21 November.

Galíndez, one of the architects considered to be the forerunner of rational and modernist architecture, is the author of some of Bilbao's most famous buildings, such as La Equitativa on Avenida de Mazarredo and La Aurora in Plaza Moyua. The exhibition brings together eight of the highest quality urban buildings of his production, more sensitive to their surroundings, with a more refined language and a more emphatic composition.
They are works built in the 1930s, 1940s and 1950s that display these characteristics so characteristic of Galíndez and are distributed between Bilbao, Barcelona and Madrid. Those located in his native city are the Hormaeche house, the La Aurora building, the Bailén tower, the office building for the Aznar shipping company and the Banco Hispano Americano. In Madrid, the Banco de Vizcaya building has been selected, and in Barcelona the Banco Hispano Americano.
According to Iñigo Basarrate, one of the curators, "this exhibition is timely in view of the interventions Galíndez's work has undergone in recent years, such as the Banco Hispano in Bilbao and Barcelona, the Canalejas Centre in Madrid and the Banco Vizcaya in Madrid". 
Through plans, reproductions of original drawings and photographs, the exhibition analyses in detail the characteristics of his work, highlighting the painstaking composition, the meticulous construction work and the attention paid to the architecture as part of an urban ensemble. 
International conferences
This afternoon the Bizkaia Aretoa will also host a double session of international conferences. Tom Emerson, from London-based 6a Architects, will be in conversation with architect and critic Fredy Massad at 18:30h. The lecture is entitled 'Never Modern', an exploration of how threads of architecture can be found in the existing city, in what it has lost and even in what was never built.
Afterwards, at 19:30h, the Swiss Christian Kerez will be in conversation with Professor María Esnaola. Through a careful questioning of images of his work and his own photography, this colloquium will reveal the common search for a specific experience of architectural space. With it, the Mugak/ Biennial programme bids farewell to Bilbao, where it has opened four new exhibitions.

The Programme is being prepared