Fernando Botero was born in 1932 in Medellín,
Colombia. At an early age he became interested in painting. He graduated from Medellín University in 1950. Botero became exhibiting his paintings in 1948 and later worked as a set designer in Bogotá. In the 1950s, he traveled to several different European countries, including Spain, Italy and France, to study the work of Renaissance and Baroque masters. He also traveled to Mexico to familiarize himself with the current Mexican avant-garde. Botero became renowned for the varied source material he drew upon, from Colombian folk imagery to canonical works by Diego Velázquez, Pablo Picasso and Francisco de Goya.
Early on he titled himself as:”the most Colombian of Colombian artists”. In 1958 Botero came to national prominence when he won the first prize at the Salón de Artistas Colombianos. Now he has achieved international recognition for his paintings, drawings and sculpture, with exhibitions across the world. His art is collected by corporations, private collectors and major museums throughout the world, like the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.
Artwork and technique
In 1960 Botero moved to New York where he experimented briefly with a gestural brushstroke, which Botero called his flirtation with the School of New York. Over the next years Botero continued to explore the manipulation of form for aesthetic effect, gradually eliminating all traces of brushwork and texture, opting instead for smooth inflated shapes.In his deceptions of contemporary Latin American life, he portrays the poverty and violence prevalent in Colombia in somber images, as well as in his iconic inflated figures. His work consists of oil paintings, pastels and bronzes, featuring bulky and sizeable figures. Despite their size, the figures often seem to float.
With aid of the size of certain elements in his work, Botero points out the importance of these subjects. He strives to give expression to pleasure and light-hearted subjects as well.
2019 Art New York, SmithDavidson Gallery, Miami, USA
2017 Zona Maco, SmithDavidson Gallery, Mexico City, Mexico
2013 Museo Bellas Artes de Bilbao, Bilbao, Spain
2012 Una Celebración, Palacio Bellas Artes de México, Mexico
2010 Art is deformation, Nassau County Museum of Art, Roslyn Harbor, NY, USA
Born in Medellín, Colombia on April 19th, 1932