Jose Luis Zumeta | Back to list of artists

Jose Luis Zumeta

Jose Luis Zumeta

Painter Jose Luis Zumeta was born in Usurbil , Guipúzcoa, in 1939.

At 14, he begins his work as graphic artist, studying later at the School of Arts and Crafts and the Asociación de Artistas of Guipuzcoa. At 19, he wins the gold medal at the at the National Young Painting competition in Madrid,

To avoid Franco’s regime isolationism, he moves to Paris in 1959. There he will first-hand know the current international avant-gardes, something that will have a deep impact on him. During his stay in Paris he will be interested in abstract expressionism, artists such as De Kooning, Pollock, Dubuffet… and European groups such as the Cobra. Also, in the French capital he will befriend Basque artists such as  R.Ruiz Balerdi, J.A Sistiaga and JM Ortiz.

In 1960 he returns to the Basque Country and settles in Hondarribia, where he begins to work with the sculptor Remigio Mendiburu.

Between 1962 and 1963 he lives in Stockholm and London. His work is marked by an abstraction based in horizontal stripes of pure colors. He will soon abandon this path introducing in his painting undulating and organic shapes.

In 1965 he is a founding member of the GAUR group, alongside Jorge Oteiza, Eduardo Chillida, Remigio Mendiburu, Nestor Basterretxea, Rafael Ruiz Balerdi, Amable Arias and Sistiaga. This group is born with the idea of recovering the dialogue and the relationship with the international avant-garde, something difficult during Franco’s regime, and ended being a pioneering force and a reference in terms of recognition of the Basque artistic activity on an international level.

In 1967 he wins the first prize at the Gran Premio de Pintura Vasca with his work “Homenaje al Gernika de Picasso”. From them on he will be commissioned several public works in  Irún (1968), Usurbil (1973), Pasajes (1974), San Sebastián (1976) or Zarautz (1986), among other places.

In the 70s his work will be featured in a group exhibition in the Palacio de Bellas Artes in Mexico as well as in a show in New York focused in young Spanish artists. During this decade he collaborates in several cultural meetings in the Basque Country and Navarre and begins his teaching activity in different ikastolas (Basque schools).

Since the 8’s, he increases his exhibitions in galleries as well as in public institutions nationally (Bilbao, San Sebastian, Madrid, Barcelona, Zaragoza, Oviedo, Valencia…) and internationally (Prague,  Frankfurt, Stuttgart, Evanton or New York).

In 2018 he joins the group of artists of our gallery.

Jose Luis Zumeta is one of the most representative artists of the post-war Basque painting. His work is present in important museums such as: Museo de Bellas Artes de Bilbao, Museo San Telmo de San Sebastián, Museo  Artium de Vitoria-Gasteiz, Museo de la Concordia in Santiago de Chile…

In 2020 Zumeta passed away while working in his studio.

Jose Luis Zumeta CV

Painter Jose Luis Zumeta - Exhibitions


Remembering Zumeta, Sala Dalmau gallery, Barcelona,


Bideak gallery, Ciboure, France.


Juan Manuel Lumbreras gallery, Bilbao.


Sala Dalmau gallery Barcelona.


El arte y el sistema (del arte). Colección Artium. Artium Art Center- Basque Museum of Contemporary Art, Vitoria.


Juan Manuel Lumbreras gallery, Bilbao.

Galería Kur, San Sebastian.

Le Carré, Bayona.


Ekain gallery, San Sebastian.


Mixtos Pavillion at Pamplona’s Citadel, Pamplona.


Luz adentro Artium Art Center- Basque Museum of Contemporary Art, Vitoria.

Juan Manuel Lumbreras gallery, Bilbao.


Portia vineyard, Gumiel de Izán. Burgos.


Publishes with his daughter Usoa a book with texts by the interns of the Arrasate-Mondragón psychiatry illustrated with 35 serigraphies. It is presented at the Bilbao Fine arts Museum.


Kur gallery, San Sebastian.

Luis Burgos gallery, Madrid.

Epelde & Mardaras gallery, Bilbao.


Ekain gallery, San Sebastian.

Arteko gallery, San Sebastian.


La obra maestra desconocida. Artium, Artium Art Center- Basque Museum of Contemporary Art, Vitoria.

BBK Foundation, Bilbao.


Expo 3+4, Biarritz.

Argucho  Iruretagoyena Antiquarian, Pamplona.


Sala Kubo, San Sebastian.


Haim Chanin Fine Arts, New York.

Crypte de Sainte Eugénie, Biarritz.

Exposition Atlantique. Epelde &Mardaras gallery, Biarritz.


Epelde & Mardaras gallery, Bilbao.


Depósito Franco Uribitarte de Bilbao.

La Brocha gallery, Bilbao.

San Martín market, San Sebastian.


The Hangar, Evanton, Scotland


Altxerri gallery, San Sebastian.

La Brocha gallery, Bilbao.

Pintores vascos en las colecciones de las Cajas de Ahorros. Bilbao Fine arts Museum.


Arco, Madrid.

Oxford Aretoa, Zumaia.

Pintores vascos en las colecciones de las Cajas de Ahorros: VII. Nueva figuración. Bizkaia Kutxa exhibition center Bilbao.


Sala García Castanon, Pamplona.


Altxerri gallery, San Sebastian.

Afinsa Almirante gallery, Madrid.


Artand History Museum, San Agustín Center, Durango.


Windsor gallery, Bilbao.


San Telmo Museum, San Sebastian.


Retrospectiva, Fine Arts Museum, Vitoria and San Telmo Museun, San Sebastian.


Homenaje a las víctimas del franquismo. Madrid. Seville. Valencia.

Retrospective show at the Fine Arts Museum, Bilbao.


Moderne Baskische Kunst, Frankfurt- Colonia.


Sástago Palace, Zaragoza.

Asturias Fine Arts Museum, Oviedo.

Bonnat Museum, Bayona.

San Telmo Museum, San Sebastian.

San Prudencio Hall, Fine Arts Museum, Vitoria.


La Ciudadela, Pamplona.

Del Palau gallery, Valencia.

Perspectives 56 gallery, Bayona.


Volsbank gallery , Biberach, Germany.

Caja Provincial de Guipuzcoa, San Sebastian.


Inter-Art Galerie, Union Freischaffender Kúnstler und Kunsfreunde, Stuttgart.

Arteder 82, Bilbao.

Artistas Vascos: entre el realismo y la figuración, 1970-1982. Provincial Museum,  Paris.

Alga gallery, San Sebastián.

Ossuna Art Center, La Laguna, Tenerife.

San Telmo Mueum,  San Sebastian.


La trama del arte vasco. Fine Arts Museum, Bilbao.

Arteder 81, Bilbao.

Pintores Guipuzcoanos.1939-1979). San Telmo Museum, San Sebastian.

Zumeta. Dibujos. Gran Vía 21 gallery, Bilbao.


Joan Miró Foundation, Barcelona.


Erakusketa 79, Velázquez Palace, Madrid.


Fine Arts Museum, Bilbao.

The citadel, Pamplona.

Juana Mordó gallery, Madrid.

Euskadi en la pintura, Art Centrum, Prague.


Euskal Erakusketa 76-Art Bask 76, Barcelona.


Joan Miró Foundation, Barcelona.

Eder Arte gallery, Vitoria.

Mikeldi gallery, Bilbao.


Pez gallery, San Sebastian.


Ateneo de Madrid, Madrid.

Durán gallery, Madrid.

Mikeldi gallery, Bilbao.


Pintura y Escultura Contemporánea Vasca. Palacio de Bellas Artes, Mexico.

Young Spanish Painters, New York.


Grupo Gaur de la Escuela Vasca. Grises gallery, Bilbao.


First Salon of Contemporary Sculpture, Barcelona.

Grises gallery, Bilbao.

Huts gallery, San Sebastian.


Grupo Gaur   (alongside Oteiza,  Chillida, Remigio Mendiburu, Néstor Basterretxea, Sistiaga, Amable Arias and Rafael Ruiz Balerdi), Barandiaran gallery, San Sebastian.

Fine Arts Museum, Bilbao.

Sala América, Vitoria.


Tres pintores y un escultor. Salas municipales de arte, San Sebastian.

Arte Actual  Carlos V Castle, Fuenterrabía. Guipúzcoa.


Jose Luis Zumeta - Public collections

Fine Arts Museum, Bilbao.

Artium, Contemporay Basqye Art Museum, Vitoria, Alava.

Vitoria Fine Art Museum, Vitoria, Alava.

San Telmo Museum., San Sebastian.

Art & History Museum, Durango

Kutxa bank Colelction

Santa Cruz de Tenerife Contemporary Art Collection, santa Cruz de Tenerife.

Solidaridad Museum, Santiago de Chile, Chile.

Testimoni Collection, Caixabank, Barcelona.

Basue Parliamentc ollection.



Painter Jose Luis Zumeta - Works in public spaces

Mural  in Artaleku street, Irun.

Mural at Ursubil square, Usurbil.

Mural at the Caja Ahorros Provincial de San Sebastián.

Mural at Pasajes Harbor.

Open air sculpture at Zarauz, Gipuzkoa.

Open air ceramic at San Sebastian park, San Sebastian.

Painter Jose Luis Zumeta - Awards

1958- Gold Medal at the Concurso Pintura Joven de Madrid.

1967-First Prize at the Gran Premio de Pintura Vasca