Contemporary art, expressed vividly: you can see exhibitions, take part in events, visit a gallery or an artist’s workshop all year round.
The city of Bayonne holds the DIDAM — on the right bank — featuring international photographers such as Lucien Clergue, Yann Arthus Bertrand and Martha Cooper. Anglet promotes contemporary art at the Beatrix Enea Villa and Georges Pompidou gallery. The town council boasts a collection of works acquired over the years, which feature in exhibitions on various themes. Sainte Eugénie Crypt in Biarritz provides an opportunity for local and French artists such as Costa and Lydie Arickx to exhibit their work. It also puts on retrospectives, such as the one on the artist César. At the Bellevue — the former casino — the city council puts on major exhibitions in the summer: on Basque artists (Ramiro Arrue and Zigor), the international scene (Picasso and Lipschitz), Mexican art (Frida Kahlo), the Flemish masters (Magritte). The La Rotonde gallery — Saint-Jean-de-Luz — mostly promotes local artists as does the Villa Duconténia.
If you like street art, get on your bike and ride through Bayonne to check out frescoes on façades! For example the work of Catalan artist DEIH ranked in 2017 among the best in the world by the site Widewalls. The Point de Vue Festival, organised by the Spacejunk Gallery, is fully devoted to this creative sphere.
There are art galleries all over the Basque country. To name but a few, the Barthelemy Bouscayrol Gallery (Biarritz) exhibits pop art, the Portal Gallery (Saint-Jean-de-Luz) features classic and top-rated regionalist artists, La Fabrika (Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port) specialises in ceramics and glass, L’Angle Gallery (Hendaye) exhibits only photography. As for the Izartea Gallery (Bayonne) it schedules contemporary artists.
The territory has a dense concentration of artists’ workshops, some of which are quite atypical. Les Serres de la Milady (Biarritz), are used by 18 artists working in various fields, then there’s the workshop-gallery of ceramist Éliane Monnin in Bayonne.
If you’re here between late August and early November, don’t miss the Biennale Internationale d’Art Contemporain in Anglet — La Littorale. Staged on the sea front at Chambre d’Amour beach, it exhibits works produced on site.