Guggenheim Bilbao, great artworks to enjoy at the Museum

Frank Gehry,

Bilbao, Spain,

Museums, Exhibitions,


Many museums have started reopening after the pandemic outbreak, and one of these is the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Spain. An icon of 20th-century architecture and at the same time, a treasure trove of significant artworks and fascinating exhibitions, including Olafur Eliasson’s In Real Life.

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Guggenheim Bilbao, great artworks to enjoy at the Museum We are all aware of the close connections and interactions between art and medicine. Enjoying art, particularly in these extraordinary, challenging times, becomes an essential outlet for our over-taxed mind, as long as it’s in a safe environment, of course. And if you can enjoy art in a safe environment that is also an architectural gem, like the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, designed by Frank Gehry (link), all the better.
We’ve been keeping our eye on the exhibitions at the Guggenheim for years. This landmark of the Basque Country city is emblematic of the success of an important architecture for the city branding and marketing. The Guggenheim Museum Bilbao is part of an international constellation of museums, which allows it to access an extensive Permanent Collection comprising all the works in the Solomon Guggenheim Foundation collections, including the Bilbao holdings. These works complement one another and, together, offer an in-depth, expanded view of modern and contemporary art.
So until the end of December 2021, it is showing some masterpieces of the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao in the exhibition called Masterpieces from the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao Collection. Visitors are treated to a selection that includes the iconic image of Marilyn Monroe repeated time and time again by Andy Warhol, Robert Rauschenberg’s expressive Barge (oil and silkscreen ink on canvas), Cy Twombly’s Nine Discourses on Commodus. Outstanding works by German painter and sculptor Anselm Kiefer and American artist Jean-Michel Basquiat are also on exhibit, along with sculptures by Basque masters Eduardo Chillida and Jorge Oteiza.
And you’ve got until April 2021 to visit the exhibition called Olafur Eliasson: In Real Life, an adaptation of last year’s show at London’s Tate Modern (link), curated by Mark Godfrey and Lucía Agirre. The practice of the Danish-Icelandic artist extends beyond creating artworks, exhibitions, and public interventions to include architecture projects. True to his belief that “Art is not the object but what the object does to the world.”, his work is also political and activist. Eliasson has created solar lamps for off-grid communities, conceived artistic workshops for asylum seekers and refugees, and created art installations to raise awareness of the climate emergency.
At a completely different level but no less attractive is the Museum’s summer initiative called Learning Through Art 2020. Here art is explored as a learning tool for primary school pupils. Talking about art and participating in the artists’ creative process is a way for the schoolchildren to deal with curricular topics from a different perspective. The program is based on the premise that kids tend to learn better when they play an active role and have a say in their own learning process. Here they are encouraged to ask questions, give free rein to curiosity, explore inspiring ideas, and experience the thrill of discovery. Like every summer, the Education Space at the Museum is filled with works by schoolchildren and visitors can enjoy them still until 27 September.
Other current exhibitions include the video installation William Kentridge: 7 Fragments and Lygia Clark: Painting as an Experimental Field, 1948–1958, An exploration of the work by the famous Brazilian artist. All of which tells us that the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao is much more than a more than an iconic, inwardly-focused landmark: it is an authentic promoter of modern and contemporary art.

Christiane Bürklein

Museum Guggenheim, Bilbao, Spain - https://www.guggenheim-bilbao.eus/en/exhibitions
Masterpieces from the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao Collection
Olafur Eliasson: In Real Life
Learning Through Art 2020
William Kentridge: 7 Fragments
Lygia Clark: Painting as an Experimental Field, 1948–1958
Images: courtesy of Museum Guggenheim Bilbao, see captions
01 - Guggenheim
02 - Olafur Eliasson: In Real Life
03 - Olafur Eliasson: In Real Life
04 - Olafur Eliasson: In Real Life
05 - Learning Through Art 2020
06 - Learning Through Art 2020
07 - Lygia Clark
08 - Koons, Puppy
09 - William Kentridge, video installation


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