Artwork of the month February

Eduardo Chillida, La Puerta de la Libertad II, 1984

Eduardo Chillida

* 1924 in San Sebastián, † 2002 in San Sebastián, Spain

La Puerta de la Libertad II, 1984

Corten steel
247 x 242 x 125 cm; 6100 kg
Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein, Vaduz / Purchased with funds from Lampadia Stiftung, Vaduz


Eduardo Chillida counts among the pioneering sculptors of the 20th century. His international standing is thanks above all to his monuments for public space, be it in front of the Federal Chancellery in Berlin, in Houston, Barcelona, Paris or in Liechtenstein. His sculptures are possessed of a powerful symbolic force and, in many cases, are dedicated to humanistic values such as tolerance, fraternity, dialogue or freedom, for example the "Gateway of Freedom" II. And they arise from a profound attachment to nature: his inspiration is usually the wind, the ocean or the horizon.

In his works he attempts to elude the laws of geometry, symmetry and gravity. His fundamental theme is space as it interacts with time and matter. "Is matter not equally a space, only a slower space?" It is the dialectics of mass and void that allows us to experience the deep dimensions of space in his work. To him, space is not abstract but rather concrete and corporeal. Imbued with life, movement and rhythms. "Space is the liveliest of all, the one that surrounds us. It is like the spirit."

In La Puerta de la Libertad II—Chillida was almost sixty when he created the sculpture—he plays with the theme of opening door leaves. Two compact steel plates are connected by two brackets, the lower one extending the direction of the steel plates, the upper one pointing inwards and thus running in the opposite direction. The result is an empty inner space created by the slightly asymmetrical brackets. Associations with the entrance to a house or the bow of a ship may suggest themselves. This opening door oscillates between positive and negative form, between designed and undesigned space, between interior and exterior. The dark steel plates cause the bright centre to open up, focusing the eye on the wide expanse of the surrounding landscape. A gateway that invites us to reflect on inner and outer freedom, on time and space, on the limits of the moment, and on the immeasurable. 

Christiane Meyer-Stoll


"My most important works are made for the public. They are for people and they belong to everyone."
Eduardo Chillida

<b>Eduardo Chillida, La Puerta de la Libertad II, 1984</b>
Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein highlights a work from the permanent collection each month throughout the year. Works from the collection of the Hilti Art Foundation are also included in this series on a regular basis.