Botero Painting

Day 194: Medellin, Colombia

Well I haven’t either, apparently he has several homes around the world and lives in Europe. But you cannot travel Colombia without hearing his name or seeing his work as he is undoubtedly the most successful artist from Colombia.

Born in Medellin, there are copies of his work everywhere, but he’s also donated hundreds of pieces to the city. His work is very recognizeable as he’s most famous for portraying very large people and animals.

Botero Sculpture

Many people have their photo taken with his sculptures, and there’s no shortage of hawkers who will gladly take your photo for a price.

But the most amusing aspect is that the human forms have genitalia and the men have oddly anatomically small bullet shaped ‘junk’ which seems to further encourage people to get a little pervy with the sculptures.

Botero Head Sculpture Medellin

Botero Sculpture Medellin

Botero dog sculpture Medellin

But like most famous artists, Botero came under fire for his use of ‘fat’ art but responded simply with the following:

An artist is attracted to certain kinds of form without knowing why. You adopt a position intuitively; only later do you attempt to rationalize or even justify it.

I thought it was interesting that you could apply this quote to much of life, who knows why we do things, it’s only afterward that we try to make sense of it.


  1. Poi on the October 30, 2010 remarked #

    I like it, although the huge head is kinda freaky.

  2. Sarah on the October 30, 2010 remarked #

    I actually likes his Art Botero. I never heard of him before till now. You shot these pictures in a very special angle which made the sculptures more standout. I like*
    Sarah recently posted..Photos- 5-Course Thai Cuisine in Hell’s Kitchen

  3. Marsha on the October 30, 2010 remarked #

    I LOVE this post, particularly Botero’s rebuttal to his critics. Who knows why so many of us do what we do. Why are some of us drawn instinctively to seek out unfamiliar experiences through travel? Why are we attracted to certain people and not to others? Just one of the great mysteries of life. P.S. Love the shot of the big head and the big head itself. Makes me want to travel to Colombia just to see them.
    Marsha recently posted..Mission Monday- Solo Savannah – Part VI

  4. ciki/agentcikay on the October 30, 2010 remarked #

    Hi darling, I love Botero and I love your website. Have linked ya sweetie! Sorry it took so long. The one of the Men playing violins hangs in our home! Gorgeous:)

  5. Jodi (legalnomads) on the October 30, 2010 remarked #

    I’ve always liked Botero and his refusal to conform to someone else’s standards (and tastes) of beauty. The more people like him, the better. My seatmate on the flight to Medellin mentioned Botero too – “he makes fat beautiful, how crazy and wonderful is that?” Exactly. Fun post!
    Jodi (legalnomads) recently posted..Colombia in the Blink of an Eye- Bogota and Medellin

  6. Tran on the October 30, 2010 remarked #

    Next time you take a bus trip, look for Botero trees!
    Tran recently posted..Cairo- On the lookout for a BIG hump!

  7. Brooks on the October 30, 2010 remarked #

    The pureness of just loving something naturally without reason, what a wonderful message for public art. Thanks for sharing and your photos really capture the statues. :)

  8. Cathy Sweeney on the October 30, 2010 remarked #

    Never heard of Botero, but glad to learn about him and his art — very interesting. His response to critics is very thought-provoking – so true. Nice photos, too!

  9. erickahb on the October 30, 2010 remarked #

    Medellin is nice city… i love my city

  10. Margo on the October 31, 2010 remarked #

    Love the quote… and I agree that it can be applied to much of life! People always try to put artists (and others who put themselves “out there”) in boxes and project all kinds of motivations on them. The quote that up, in a positive way, beautifully.
    Margo recently posted..Lotusland Lovelies in Montecito- California

  11. Robin on the November 1, 2010 remarked #

    A genuinely informative post – you will undoubtedly have introduced this artist to many for the first time.

  12. Dina on the November 1, 2010 remarked #

    The pieces looking weird, but I like them! I love the quote too.
    Dina recently posted..Termite Mounds of Queensland’s Savannah

  13. Cornelius Aesop on the November 1, 2010 remarked #

    Great photos, and while I don’t recall the name I want to believe I’ve seen some of his work before.
    Cornelius Aesop recently posted..Blowing Through Chicago- Pubs- Grubs and Train Hubs

  14. Zablon Mukuba on the November 1, 2010 remarked #

    botero is into fattys!!! great photos, i never heard of him before but now i know thanks

  15. Christy - Ordinary Traveler on the November 1, 2010 remarked #

    That’s funny about the bullet shaped “junk”! I’m not sure why the sculpture of the lady is standing on top of a head though. Interesting…
    Christy – Ordinary Traveler recently posted..Civil Disobedience- The Art of Tramping Part 1

  16. Hogga on the November 1, 2010 remarked #

    Love it! I’m gonna go eat some cake now, knowing someone will love me after!
    Hogga recently posted..Pros and Cons of Going Remote- Can Ya Dig It

  17. Corinne @ Gourmantic on the November 3, 2010 remarked #

    I like his art. There’s beauty in it once you look beyond the ‘fat’ people and subjects he portrays.
    Corinne @ Gourmantic recently posted..Westfield Sydney Taste Tour- Charlie &amp Co Burgers- Eat deli Kitchen and More

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