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Fernando Botero

(1932 - )


La guerra (The War)
Sin Título (Untitled)
Mujer llorando (Crying Woman)




Born in Medellin, Colombia in 1932, Fernando Botero is a painter and sculptor. After attending a Jesuit school in Medellin he was sent to a school for matadors in 1944 for two years. In 1948, he had his first exhibition in Medellin with other artists from the region and provided illustrations for the Sunday supplement of the daily paper El Colombiano. Botero's discovery of the works of Diego Rivera, David Alfaro Siqueiros and Jose Clemente Orozco inspired his own painting. After high school, Botero worked as a set designer, and moved to Bogota in 1951. A few months after his arrival he had his first one-man show at the Galeria Leo Matiz, consisting of works influenced by Gauguin and Picasso's "blue" and "rose" periods. In 1952, Botero traveled with a group of artists to Barcelona, where he stayed briefly before moving to Madrid. From 1952 to 1953, he studied at the Academia de San Fernando in Madrid, but was more interested in the paintings of Goya and Velasquez in the Prado. In 1953, Botero moved to Paris, where he lost his earlier fascination with the modern French masters and spent most of his time in the Louvre. He then traveled to Florence, where he stayed from 1953 to 1954 studying the works of Renaissance masters such as Giotto, Uccello and Piero della Francesca. In 1955, Botero returned to Colombia, where he exhibited at the Biblioteca Nacional in Bogota and began teaching at the School of Fine Arts of the University. That same year he spent time in Mexico studying the political murals of Rivera and Orozco. Botero's visit to the United States in the late 1950's prompted a return to live and work in New York City for ten years beginning in 1960. Widely exhibited and included in the collections of major museums around the world, Botero has received numerous awards, including the First Intercol at the Museo de Arte Moderno de Bogota. Since the early 1970's Botero has divided his time between Paris, New York, Tuscany, Madrid and Medellin.

Further Reading

Donacion Botero: coleccion Banco de la Republica, Santa Fe de Bogota, Banco de la Republica de Colombia, Santa Fe de Bogota, 2000.
Sullivan, Edward J. and Jean-Marie Tasset, Fernando Botero: monograph & catalogue raisonne: paintings 1975-1990, Acatos, Lausanne, c2000.
Fernando Botero, Museo de Arte Contemporaneo de Monterrey, Monterrey, Mexico, 1999.
Sullivan, Edward J., Fernando Botero: drawings and watercolors, Rizzoli, New York, 1993.
Botero, der Maler: Bilder und Zechnungen aus 30 Jahren, Edition Brusberg, Berlin, 1991.
Botero: la corrida: oleos, acuarelas, dibujos, Museo de Arte Contemporaneo de Caracas, Caracas, 1989.
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