This is Ramiro Arrue

By Gwylym Owen

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Ramiro Arrue y Valle, generally known as Ramiro Arrue (20 May 1892 – 1 April 1971) was a Basque painter, illustrator, and ceramist, of Spanish nationality, who devoted his measure to the Basque Country.

Ramiro Arrue was born in Bilbao, into an artistic family: his three older brothers, Alberto, Ricardo, and José, were with artists and frequently held joint exhibitions as soon as him. He along with had two sisters. Their father, Lucas Arrue, was an art miser who sold his collections (including a Goya) to meet the expense of the artistic training of his sons. At the age of nineteen, Ramiro travelled to Paris to accept courses at the Académie de la Grande Chaumière. Living in Montparnasse, he became an connect of his countrymen Ignacio Zuloaga and Paco Durrio, as without difficulty as the sculptor Antoine Bourdelle, who became a close friend. He was also allied with Picasso, Modigliani, and Jean Cocteau. In 1911, Arrue exhibited at the Salon des Artistes français.

In 1922, along considering his links Philip Veyrin and Commandant William Boissel, he founded the Musée Basque at Bayonne.

In 1925 Arrue won a gold medal at the Exposition Internationale des Arts Decoratifs. He exhibited in Bayonne, Pau, Strasbourg, Bilbao, and Cordoba. Along taking into account his brother José, he travelled and exhibited in South America, to Buenos Aires and Montevideo. He often, however, returned to the Basque Country, particularly to Saint-Jean-de-Luz, where he settled in 1917 and where he found his main inspiration for landscapes, portraits, and unmemorable scenes. In 1929, he married Suzanne: they went upon honeymoon in St. Tropez.

Arrue produced illustrations for Francis Jammes (La Noce basque), Pierre Loti (Ramuntcho), Joseph Peyré (Jean le basque), and Jean Poueigh (Le Folklore des Pays d’oc). He also intended sets and costumes for the Bordeaux Opera’s production Perkain, and produced many murals.

In 1943, Ramiro Arrue, who had not become a naturalized French citizen, was arrested with other Spanish Basques and imprisoned in the fortress of Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port. He resumed painting after the war.

The fade away of Arrue’s vivaciousness was marred by loneliness and financial hardship. He died in Saint-Jean-de-Luz in April 1971 of lung cancer.

Ramiro Arrue remains one of the most representative painters of the Basque Country. His style is figurative, featuring easy lines following an re monumental tone and muted colour harmonies. The academic Hélène Saule-Sorbé wrote: “The colours of Ramiro Arrue’s brush are a trilogy: green, white, red. The permanence of heraldry, a sign of belonging, the palette of a country of green hills, of capable white houses whose roofs and woodwork is red.”

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