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Indepth Arts News:

"Fernando Botero: Painter of The Incredible"
2002-02-01 until 2002-06-02
ARKEN Museum of Modern Art
Ishoj, , DK Denmark

Fernando Botero - not everybody knows his name but most people know and treasure his works. From February 2002 his billowing and sensuous universe can be experienced at the art museum ARKEN. In February ARKEN opens its doors to the world-famous Colombian artist Fernando Botero. His paintings have attained global popularity like few others'. His works of art appeal to a very large audience. For Botero's art is created with the conviction that art's principal task is to bring beauty into the world. It is sensuous, ample and colourful.

To Botero beauty is first and foremost form and volume. When he paints women he finds supreme beauty in the curves of the female body. Botero's women, however, are no svelte, glamorous maidens - no, they are big, ultra feminine and opulent dames with ample thighs, wide hips and voluptuous behinds.

Botero says he never paints fat women. If we take a look, we find that they are not 'out of shape,' on the contrary rather. He explores the voluminous with an eye to the picture's beauty. In Spanish the word hermosa thus means both beautiful and fat.

Botero was born in 1932 in Medellín in Colombia and spent his childhood in the Andes. Here lie his artistic roots. As a young man he travelled to Madrid, Florenze and Paris to study the classical European art first-hand. With a bold hand he merges European art history with essential expressions and subjects from his own life-affirming world; that of Latin America.

This is the first time Botero's art can be experienced in Denmark. ARKEN's large exhibition comprises 66 paintings, from Botero's early beginnings in 1949 until today. In seven themes the exhibition presents Botero as a versatile artist with strong moorings in the Latin American culture as well as the European art tradition.

The audience will see both his well-known, merry brothel scenes, the colourful depictions of Colombian street life and the subjects from the bullring. In addition to this, his interpretations of art history's classical painting and the satirical portraits of people from all walks of Colombia's catholic society. Finally the exhibition presents a less known side to Botero's painting: The solemn depictions of the dictatorship's assaults on the civilian population.

Fernando Botero
The President, 1989

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