Fernando Botero

Botero at Fairchild

The rotund and robust scluptures of Fernando Botero were on display at Fairchild for two art seasons. Eight incredible pieces transformed Fairchild's garden setting into an art gallery parallel to none.

The Botero Collection was on display courtesy of Gary Nader.


Dancing Couple Relief


                     Horse, 2005


Head, 1999


Man Walking, 1999

                            Adam, 1990

Male Torso, 1992




                                                                                        Reclining Woman, 2003


About the Artist

Born in Medellín, Colombia, in 1932, Fernando Botero began drawing in watercolors at a very young age. After attending a Jesuit school in Medellín, he was sent to a school for matadors in 1944 for two years. He first exhibited in 1948 in Medellín with other artists from the region and provided illustrations for the Sunday supplement of the daily paper El Colombiano. In 1951, he moved to Bogotá, and held his first one-man exhibition at the Leo Matiz Gallery. The following year, at the age of 20, he was awarded a second prize at the National Salon in Bogotá. With the money he earned from the award and his exhibitions, Botero traveled to Spain, France and Italy to study the work of the Old Masters.

In 1960, he moved to New York, and the following year the Museum of Modern Art bought his painting, "Mona Lisa, Age Twelve," for its collection. Around 1964, the style he is best known for emerged: it is characterized by inflated, rounded forms, painted with smooth, almost invisible brushstrokes, puffing up to an exaggerated size human figures, natural features and objects of all kinds, celebrating the life within them while mocking their role in the world. He combined the regional with the universal, constantly referring to his native Colombia and also creating elaborate parodies of works of art from the past.

In 1973, Botero left New York for Paris and began to produce sculpture, creating his particularly distinctive "puffed-up" shapes. Botero's bronzes present his characteristic world of swollen forms. He has been asked many times about the origins of his puffed-up personalities. "My subject matter is sometimes satirical," Botero has said of his works. "These 'puffed-up' personalities are being 'puffed' to give them sensuality. In art, as long as you have ideas and think, you are bound to deform nature. Art is deformation. There are no works of art that are truly realistic."

Botero's cherished concept "art is deformation" is based on his belief that art is to transform reality. He deforms as an attempt to impart sensuality to objects, thus creating sensuality through his own unique forms. By doing so, his final purpose is to provide his viewers with an upbeat take on life. The bronze sculptures are first made of clay, and then cast in plastic. The casts are then taken to a foundry, where they are transformed into bronzes.

Many of the monumental sculptures in this exhibition, such as "Male Torso," have graced some of the most prestigious boulevards from the Champs-Elysées in Paris to Park Avenue in New York. Other major cities where these sculptures have been exhibited include Washington, D.C., Madrid, Lisbon, Venice and most recently, Tokyo and Singapore.

His paintings, sculptures and drawings are exhibited and represented in museum and private collections around the world. Botero's art is his life: he is only interested in creating and doing his artwork. He says that his passions are reading, studying, viewing and enjoying the benefits of art.