Jesús de Echebarría



During the first half of the 20th century, travel was reserved either for adventurers or, more generally, the bourgeoisie. As in the case of our photographer, impassioned by relief and stereoscopic views, there tended to be family trips, often to natural places,– people journeyed to visitthe wonders of the landscape–, or to cultural spaces of note. Paris and Italy were spaces photographed by great numbers of refined tourists in search of souvenirsthey might share on their return. Amateur images keep up a fundamental relation with the notion of memory and have often been conserved in what were called travel albums: they prove to be very instructive about how the discovery of the world unfolded a century ago. A chance, too, to perceive the gulf that separates us from that kind of travel, when today’s mass tourism has designed obligatory routes that often become pell-mell itineraries…


Jesús was born in Bilbao in 1882 into a middle class bourgeois family from the same city. He studied commerce in 1903 and then obtained a post in the Bank of Bilbao, which he was to lose over a period of ten years for political reasons. Some of his hobbies were the study of basque language and the stereoscopic photography, as a result of which he travelled, won various awards and honourable mentions and even attracted the attention of some foreign publications of the day. He died in Bilbao at the age of 80.