Following on from my blog on the artist Roy Carruthers I thought it would be appropriate to feature the work of Fernando Botero. Fernando Botero Angulo (born 19 April 1932) is a Colombian figurative artist, self-titled "the most Colombian of Colombian artists" early on, coming to prominence when he won the first prize at the Salón de Artistas Colombianos in 1958.
In 1948, at the age of 16, Botero published his first illustrations in the Sunday supplement of the El Colombiano daily paper and used the money he received to pay for his high school education at the Liceo de Marinilla de Antioquia. 1948 was also the year Botero first exhibited, along with other artists from the region.
From 1949 to 1950, Botero worked as a set designer, before moving to Bogotá in 1951. His first one-man show occurred at the Galería Leo Matiz in Bogotá, a few months after his arrival. In 1952, Botero travelled with a group of artists to Barcelona, where he stayed only briefly before moving on to Madrid.
In Madrid, Botero studied at the Academia de San Fernando. In 1952, he traveled to Bogotá, where he had a personal exhibit at the Leo Matiz gallery. Later that year, he won the ninth edition of the Salón de Artistas Colombianos.
In 1953, Botero moved to Paris, where he spent most of his time in the Louvre. He lived in Florence, Italy from 1953 to 1954, studying the works of Renaissance masters.
Botero gained considerable attention in 2005 for his Abu Ghraib collection, which began as an idea he had on a plane, finally culminating in more than 85 paintings and 100 drawings.
The Circus collection followed in 2008, with 20 works of oil and watercolor. In an interview promoting his Circus collection, Botero said: "After all this, I always return to the simplest things: still lifes."