IGNACIO ZULOAGA (1870-1945) IN PEDRAZA
In 1917 IGNACIO ZULOAGA told his uncle Daniel Zuloaga: “I have been travelling to Segovia for eighteen years now; it is there that I have painted all my major works, and it is my wish to continue painting there for as long as I am able, as it is a region that has won a place in my affections…”
And in 1945, just a few months prior to his untimely death, he confessed to the Bilbao journalist Esteban Calle Iturrino, who would later publish his statements in the Vitoria-base journal Vida Vasca, “That is the reason why I love Castile so deeply; that is the reason Castile has shown me the totality of its light and shadows, its bold contrasts of blues, reds and yellows, and the incomparable shades of grey of its distant hazes; the cornerstones of those defining settings and the only integral landscapes that have formed a constant presence on my palette”.
Ignacio Zuloaga made his first visit to Segovia late in 1898; it was not until 1925 that he finally acquired Pedraza Castle.
A purchase that would provide further proof of his love for Segovia and its lands.
On 3rd December 1925 José Rodao wrote in El Adelantado de Segovia: “Great news for the town of Pedraza and Segovia…Today the illustrious Ignacio Zuloaga, Lord of Pedraza Castle <>1, entitled to dispose of his serfs as he pleases, yet lacking the will to do so, for the tasks that lie ahead of him have more to do with art and love…
The news provoked an immediate response and on 11th December that same year, the town of Pedraza expressed its gratitude to the artist in an article that was published in the same Segovia daily. Over several paragraphs, the Town Council, local judge, residents, priest, doctor, pharmacist, state teacher and Commander of the Civil Guard barracks all express their satisfaction with the following words
“Your illustrious and widely-renowned surname will forever be associated with Pedraza…the sons and daughters of this town hereby swear that they too will honour your name through the everlasting memory that will be passed on to their descendents of the happy event that in November 1925 marked the start of a revival of this town that shall be known as”.
Numerous testimonies offer proof of the inextricable ties that bind Pedraza and Ignacio Zuloaga.
Mariano Gómez de Caso Estrada