Painter Sculptor
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See works by this artist

Fernando Botero was born in 1932 in Medellin, "the city of eternal spring", the second urban center of Colombia. He lost his father at the age of four, and it was his uncle who served as a father figure.His uncle was an ardent fan of bull-fighting, and he enrolled his nephew in a school teaching this fascinating art. The experience traumatized the young boy, but also inspired his first designs.


Botero was a precocious artist, and he was only 16 years old when some of his early drawings were published in a renowned Colombian journal called "El Colombiano". He was one of the first to become interested in Western painting, and also one of the first to perceive the genius of Picasso. It was actually his written article on the Spanish painter entitled "Picasso and Anti-Conformism in Art" that led to his expulsion from high school in 1949. But nothing stopped the young Fernando, who nonetheless proceeded to finish his studies and leave to discover the world, in which he was to be one of the rare artists to be recognized during his lifetime.


His "official" career really started in 1958, when he won the First Prize at the "Salon des Artistes Colombiens". In diverse media including drawing, watercolor, scupture and painting, Botero is best-known for his round and voluptuous figures.


As a result of his many trips to the United States and in Europe, Fernando developed a style of his own, the first fruit of which was "Still Life with a Mandolin" in 1957. His style, mixing inspirations from Precolombian, Popular and Western Art, set his art apart from any current or past art movement. Botero's body of work is both unique and poignant, and he continues developing and creating today.


David Alfaro Siqueiros
Diego Rivera
Diego Vélasquez
Francisco de Goya
José Clemente Orozco
Pablo Picasso
Pre-Columbian art

Major works

  • Ballerina Gamba in Alto (Vestita)


  • 2008
    Centre des Arts de Monterrey, Monterrey, Mexico
  • 2007
    Musée national des beaux-arts, Québec, Canada
  • 2001
    Antiguo Colegio, San Ildefonso, Mexico
  • 1987
    Musée Reina Sofia, Madrid, Spain
  • 1979
    Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, USA
  • 1966
    Staatliche Kunsthalle, Baden-Baden, Germany
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