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martes 19 enero 2021





Bertan > Bertan 21 Las portadas de las iglesias guipuzcoanas > Versión en inglés: Complementary features

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Complementary features

45. Detail of the top of the door in Errezil, abundantly decorated with flowers and cherubs.© Jonathan Bernal
45. Detail of the top of the door in Errezil, abundantly decorated with flowers and cherubs.© Jonathan Bernal

Wherever funds allowed, the parish churches of Gipuzkoa were fitted with beautiful inner doors to protect them from inclement weather in winter. In some cases these consisted of simple wooden doors closing across the main doorway, but others are highly ornate, consisting of a robust structure with a central door and two side doors, with a vaulted roof or ceiling overhead. The shape of the plan varied, though the most common were quadrangles, trapeziums or elongated octagons. As if they were buildings in their own right, special budgets were drawn up for these doors and permission sought from the bishopric to construct them. Every detail of the architecture, assembly and decoration was carefully planned, as was the material to be usedógenerally good quality oak or chestnut wood. This had to be carefully chosen and assembled following the grain of the wood and the mouldings had to be cut to fit. We can still see some fine examples of carving and execution on these doors, since Gipuzkoa was home to master carpenters of great standing, such as Domingo de Laca and Domingo de Pellón (both from Mutriku), who built the doors of the church in Deba in 1770; and Francisco de EchenagusÌa who built the doors in Errezil to a design drawn up by Francisco de Ibero in 1743. Other leading craftsmen came from further afield: Lucas de Camino, for example, was originally from Santander although he spent much of his life in Gipuzkoa. He executed many fine wooden pieces and was responsible for building the inner door of the church in Azkoitia, designed by the architect Ignacio de Ibero in 1761 and that of Mutriku which has not survived.

46. Inner and outer doors of the Church of Azkoitia, by Ignacio de Ibero. The inner doors of the porticos of the churches were designed by architects as true works of architecture, with pilasters, entablatures and balustraded crowns, including ornamental features such as vases, flowers and sculptures.© Jonathan Bernal
46. Inner and outer doors of the Church of Azkoitia, by Ignacio de Ibero. The inner doors of the porticos of the churches were designed by architects as true works of architecture, with pilasters, entablatures and balustraded crowns, including ornamental features such as vases, flowers and sculptures.© Jonathan Bernal
47. 1. Drawing for the chancel of the church of Santa Maria in Tolosa, designed by José Ignacio de Lavi, showing the two alternatives from which the church could choose. 2. Doorway leading to the church under the portico, designed by Tomás de Jáuregui. 3. Detail of the top of the design eventually chosen and also executed by Tom·s de J·uregui.© Xabi Otero
47. 1. Drawing for the chancel of the church of Santa Maria in Tolosa, designed by José Ignacio de Lavi, showing the two alternatives from which the church could choose. 2. Doorway leading to the church under the portico, designed by Tomás de Jáuregui. 3. Detail of the top of the design eventually chosen and also executed by Tom·s de J·uregui.© Xabi Otero

Some architects better know for building altarpieces also designed and built these smaller pieces. José Ignacio Lavi, for example, designed the inner doors which can still be seen in the church of Santa Maria in his home town of Tolosa in 1754; he submitted two designs to the parish patrons for them to choose the one they liked best. The plan chosen coincides with the door used to this day. Depending on the scale of the work, the doors might take between six months and a year to make. The decorations were related to those of the rest of the building and the altarpiece, but were generally more ornate. They contained splendid caissons or door panels in geometric shapes with fine curved profiles, decorated with incisions, balls and garlands of plants or flowers. The whole piece was topped like a building with balustrades, pediments and sculptures.

43. The inner doors were highly ornate works which served to complement the doorways. The church of Santa Maria in San Sebastian contains a very elegant example.© Jonathan Bernal
43. The inner doors were highly ornate works which served to complement the doorways. The church of Santa Maria in San Sebastian contains a very elegant example.© Jonathan Bernal
44. The simple original doors were gradually replaced from the eighteenth century with striking new pieces, such as the side door of the church of Errezil, carved by Francisco de Ibero in 1743.© Jonathan Bernal
44. The simple original doors were gradually replaced from the eighteenth century with striking new pieces, such as the side door of the church of Errezil, carved by Francisco de Ibero in 1743.© Jonathan Bernal
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