|function||exposition space, renovation|
The Zabalaga Farmhouse is the centrepiece of the Chillida Leku Museum, a unique and magical space of a 12-hectare hillside with over 40 sculptures. The Zabalaga farmhouse houses the smaller format art pieces. Built in 1543, it's one of the oldest buildings still standing in Gipuzkoa. When the Chillida family purchased the first parcel of the Zabalaga estate in 1984, the farmhouse was essentially in ruins. Chillida turned the restoration into yet another work of art: the exterior remained as true to the original as possible, including the stately coat of arms, while the inside was gutted to give it a whole new personality. Chillida’s artistic intuition was backed by architect Joaquín Montero. He recalls the reconstruction work was carried out in a very peculiar way, without budgets or deadlines. 'Eduardo established the method, following his own work schedule, moving forward step by step, his only consideration being quality and a job well done.'