"Vicente's paintings and sculptures
seem precious gems; he digs out in silence
from the hidden garden of God.
In a sense, he is a miner. In another sense,
a conquistador. His fingers, like ripened grapes,
forcefully endowed with fertility. When he works,
the clay in his hands becomes full of transparent
shades and white, and time stands still."
Basque artist par excellence
Vicente Jáuregui Presa was born in Bilbao in 1961. He went to grade school in El Salvador and attended Gaztelueta College in Bilbao, where he finished high school. He obtained his degree in Fine Arts from the University of the Basque Country. As a student in El Salvador, he won a school competition with a poster he created about hunger and exhibited it twice in Gaztelueta in Las Arenas, Vizcaya.
His early years as an artist saw him doing private commissions and a mural. At the beginning of his studies in Fine Arts, he took part in various collective exhibitions and competitions with other local artists at such Bilbao venues as the CAMB Cultural Centre and the Tango Gallery. Then one of his posters was chosen for the Bilbao Fine Arts celebration. During the summer of 1976, he began a French course at the University of Caen in Normandy. In the summer of 1979, he stayed in the U.K. for a brief period. To get by, he worked at W.U.S. Priory Farm Camp in Wisbech, Cambridgeshire, with other international students.
In Paris and London, he was introduced to the last European Art Movement and great art pieces from the Classical and Post-Impressionist periods. In the '80s, Vicente returned to Paris and directly sold his works, primarily collages, on the streets at the Place Beaubourg. He even had an offer for a collective exhibition at Claude-Joey Gallery, but he couldn't self-finance it. In the same period, he created a poster announcing Aste Nagusia, the foremost summer festival in Bilbao, and a poster shown in La Sala de la C.A.V. in the Gran Via in Bilbao.
Vicente has participated in various open-air, poster, and painting competitions. In 1983 he exhibited one piece at the Consulado de Bilbao and took part in the II Plastic Arts competition in Villa de Bilbao with a sculpture in polychrome.
During that same year, he also exhibited various sculptures and paintings in Totem Bar in the Port of Santa Maria, Cadiz, Spain. The same bar acquired two of his sculptures in polychrome, which remain there today. For the bar, he also created a mural.
In an exhibition held as a homage to American architect, painter, and sculptor Tony Smith at the iconic Achuri train station in Bilbao, the great Basque artist Jorge Oteiza praised Vicente's portrait of Smith in concrete. Since 1984, Vicente has worked with clay sculptures and oil paintings. Vicente's early works have found a permanent home in Galeria de Arte Llamas in Bilbao (top photo).
Vicente and his wife Alina with whom he has a son, Alex.
Irish actor Phelim Kelly and Vicente meet up in London in one of Vicente's regular trips there.
Vicente is surrounded by his four sons and the youngest addition to their family, Simon, his first grandchild.
Vicente's youngest son Alex relaxing together on a weekend in Laredo.
Vicente and his son Oscar on a boat along the coast of Cantabria.
Vicente enjoys Spain's famous cafe con leche with one of his four sons, Pablo.
Vicente holding his newly-born first grandchild, Simon.
Vicente (seated, third from left) with his parents and siblings.
Vicente in his younger years working on the bust of Juan Carlos I which he later donated to his adopted hometown of Laredo.