ZUBIAURRE AGUIRREZABAL, Ramón de
(Garai, Bizkaia, 1882 - Madrid, 1969)
Painting. Garai (Bizkaia), Madrid
Ramón de Zubiaurre was born in 1882 and was a deaf and dumb child. He trained at the Higher School of Fine Arts of San Fernando in Madrid, and under masters Carlos de Haes and Antonio Muñoz Degrain he developed a penchant for naturalistic landscape painting, indebted to academicism. Initially, his life and works bore a great resemblance to those of his brother Valentín: the two artists explored genre painting in a common style inspired by Ignacio Zuloaga and modernismo, the Spanish version of Art Nouveau. They travelled to France (Paris) and to Italy, and presented their works at the National Fine Art Expositions, where Ramón won a number of prizes between the years 1904 and 1910. In 1912 he moved to Holland, where he adopted a colourful Expressionism that evoked that of Fauve paintings. Using a simple and direct technique, he ironically depicted the true essence of the Basque people, and his compositions reveal an interest in Japonisme that paralleled that of other artists at the time. From that point on, tradition and avant-garde would go hand- in-hand in his oeuvre. During the Spanish Civil War he produced only drawings, highly charged with spirituality and asceticism. Once the war was over he moved to America, where he would live for ten years, taking part in numerous exhibitions staged in Buenos Aires, Santiago de Chile, Lima, and other towns. He returned to Spain in 1951, and would to continue to exhibit on a regular basis. He died in Madrid in 1969.