Dinning in one of the local restaurants in Medellin, a particular painting caught my attention; a replica of the famous Monalisa staring from one of the walls and smiling sarcastic at the costumers eating one arepa after the other. Arepa is a delicious colombian bread made of corn flour that accompanies every dish and it might as well explain the extra pounds that Monalisa has gained during her visit in Colombia.
Botero square, Medellin
I knew absolutely nothing about Botero and his interesting art work but a visit to the old quarter of Medellin was about to reveal me that behind the weird looking Monalisa there is a local artist passionate about chubby people.
Fernando Botero is so loved by his country who have named after him an entire square which display 23 of his best abstract statues.
Soldiers, animals and Adam and Eve themselves are attracting the tourists in the heart of Medellin and with them plenty of local vendors and pickpockets, that makes out of this beautiful square the most unsafe spot of the city.
We would have loved to explore a bit longer the square and the park located near by but we decided instead to take refuge in the Antioquia museum, delighted to discover more unique art works in a safer environment.
Pablo Escobar fan of Botero work
Unfortunately it is inevitable to talk about Colombia without mentioning the kingpin Pablo Escobar. Responsible of the death of 25 innocent people killed by the explosion of a bomb placed inside one of the Botero statues symbolizing peace affected the personal life of the artist and determined him to create a series of paintings that reflected the violence in Colombia.
The artist was even more angered when two of his paintings were found in the kingpin house after his death.
Fernando Botero, the artist and the man
Botero was born in Medellin, Colombia and he is currently 88 years old. Surprisingly even though his entire art work consist in depicting exaggerated fat people as form of political sarcasm or humor, the artist states that “never in his life he has painted a fat person, he just added more volume, to create something more plastic, more monumental”.
For a better understanding of his different view over the people, a special mirror was placed inside of the museum where you can see yourself more voluptuous, just like edible art.