“Sometimes, in landscapes like Galicia I take into account the Celtic cultural world.”
The vision of the basque painter and sculptor Agustín Ibarrola Goicoechea, is thus transferred to the sculptural ensemble of the Ecoespazo O Rexo. A reused natural space in the Ourense parish of Requeixo de Valverde, which seeks to harmonise the natural elements of the landscape itself -water, trees or stones- with the incorporation of original reusable materials from the area.
Just five kilometres from the centre of Allariz, is this natural, ethnographic and artistic space in which Ibarrola leaves its mark. In it we can find different samples that merge with the nature of the place. Parallel to the river Arnoia, there is a group of sculptures in granite stone painted with abstract motifs, in no case similar. By their nature, all the stones have different sizes, shapes and dispositions, which allows the visitor to play with the perspectives depending on the effect of the sun on the works.
In addition to the sculptures, the also founder and member of the 57 team – a group of Spanish artists formed in Paris in May 1957 against subjectivism, surrealism and any emotional or individual content in the artwork – also painted some of the trees found by the river.
The space also organises different cultural and artistic activities that add value to the public use of the ecospace. It has a mini hydraulic power station – built in the first half of the last century – reconditioned to resume electricity production, a farm-school that has its own milk sheep farm and produces cured sheep’s cheese, and even its own cheese factory. Without forgetting its Environmental Education Centre where the visitor is shown the possibilities of renewable energies and where young people can learn about livestock work with the aim of avoiding rural depopulation and encouraging the creation of new farms.
For its part, the initiative of the farm was launched in 2000 with two hundred ‘lachas’ sheep (latxa in Basque) which, in addition to serving to clean and fertilize naturally the mountains of O Rexo, they are the main attraction for schools and families who approach this point.
That’s why Ecoespazo O Rexo is, without a doubt, a singular place where art and culture are recognized as the engine for the conservation of some open-air places.