The old prison in Markina-Xemein (Biscay)


Ignacio García SánchezGabriele Muguruza Goenaga and Paula Prieto Fernández de Velasco


Oier Iruretagoiena Arregi


Text by Oier IruretagoienaZena eta dena, PDF [546KB]

harriak: “zena eta dena” exposición

The old prison was built in 1912 and operated as such until the 1970s. Its walls are covered with prisoners’ graffiti, including names, dates and drawings. It is now empty, but has been used from time to time for cultural events.

It is thought that the hermitage of Arretxinaga was an old pagan site which was later Christianised. Now, at a time when few masses are held there, it is being given a new lease of life as a cultural venue.

Both sites have a strong character and show many traces of their history. The prison exhibition and the event in the hermitage start from an attempt to unite with the places themselves and to build something related to them, juxtaposing new elements with what is already there.

Every time we create unions, each element makes the others stand out, or directs our attention towards details which wouldn’t be noticed any other way.

What was, and what we bring, will coexist for one month.

Opening times:
Saturday to Sunday, 12:00–15:00
For visits Monday to Friday, please make a booking in advance with Uhagon Kulturgunea by calling 946 166 303 or emailing