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Young Basque architecture crowns the Old Part of Donostia with the exhibition ‘Peña Ganchegui Award 2021’.

Argazkia: Mikel Blasco

  • The exhibition, which features this year's award winners and the three special mentions, was presented this morning.
  • It is organised by the Peña Ganchegui Archive and designed by the previous winners, Ane Arce and Iñigo Berasategui, who won the prize in 2019.
  • The exhibition includes a vertical structure that visually connects two areas of the same urban space divided into two heights.
  • In the afternoon, the winners of this edition, Iñigo Ocamica and Iñigo Tudanca, will give a talk named ‘The opportunity of the limits’ at the Basque Institute of Architecture.

The Peña Ganchegui Archive presented today the exhibition ‘Peña Ganchegui Award 2021’ as part of the Basque Country International Architecture Biennial Mugak/. Located outside the Basilica of Santa María, in the Old Part of San Sebastian, it brings together a sample of the work of the teams selected by the jury of this third edition of the Young Basque Architecture Prize.

Organised by the Peña Ganchegui Archive and designed by the winners of the previous edition in 2019, Ane Arce and Iñigo Berasategui, from the BEAR studio, the exhibition includes a vertical structure that connects the two levels that exist in the public space between 31 de Agosto and Andereño E. Zipitria streets. “It connects the two levels, rising several metres above the upper one. By means of a mechanism of mirrors, the installation invites visitors to approach the lower level, look through the window, search for the horizon beyond the wall, go up and enjoy contemplating the work of the young award-winning architects”, explained Rocío Peña, director of the Archive.

“The exhibition is based between two levels, two heights and two gazes: the immediate one of now and below; recognition, respect and place. The distant one to dream, to enjoy future talent and to seek the horizon", Arce and Berasategui emphasised. “The place was already a place, as Peña Ganchegui said, and to act in such a connoted environment is simply to support yourself and let others speak for you”, they expalined.

The Peña Ganchegui Prize is awarded every two years by the Peña Ganchegui Archive in collaboration with the Directorate of Housing, Land and Architecture of the Basque Government. It is named by one of the most outstanding Basque architects of the second half of the 20th century, and is awarded with the intention of recognising a young architectural career and at the same time promoting a career with an emerging projection, giving visibility to those contributions that, in addition to representing exemplary professional practice, contribute to promoting, developing and consolidating architectural culture.

This award recognises the incipient emerging trajectory of one or several architects with less than a decade of experience who have trained or developed their professional work in the Basque Country. On this occasion, it was the Ocamica Tudanca Arquitectos studio that won the award on 7 October. “The greatest virtue was getting to know each other, generating networks that allow us to share interests, as well as fears and concerns. In a profession as devalued and precarious as ours, we are grateful for initiatives such as this award, which is a little push for the young people who are trying hard to make our way”, emphasised the creators of the studio, Iñigo Tudanca and Iñigo Ocamica.

The jury of this edition also awarded three special mentions to the candidatures presented by Jonander Agirre, Alex Etxeberria with Eloi Landia and Guillermo Avanzini. All of them are represented in the exhibition, which can be visited until 30 November.


‘The opportunity of the limits’

In the afternoon, at 6 p.m., the Basque Institute of Architecture will welcome Iñigo Ocamica and Iñigo Tudanca. They will give a talk entitled ‘The opportunity of limits’, in which they will reflect on the experiences acquired during their first years in the profession and will present a series of works concatenated over time, whose common thread is to understand the limits found in the context as a project opportunity.


The Biennial continues its activities tomorrow

Tomorrow, Friday 29th, another of the Mugak/ exhibitions will be presented in the Old Town. This time it will be organised by the Official Basque-Navarre Association of Architects, which has organised a round table discussion about its exhibition ‘Arantzazu, 70 years’. It will take place at 18h at the Basque Institute of Architecture and will be attended, among others, by the architect and daughter of Francisco Sáenz de Oiza, María Luisa Sáenz Guerra, and the architect and grandson of Luis Laorga, Enrique Arenas Laorga. The exhibition vindicates the figure of both architects in the construction of the Basilica of Nuestra Señora de Aranzazu, and will be open from Saturday 30th at the D'museoa in Donostia.

The Programme is being prepared