Toledo Museum of Art Presents The Baroque World of Fernando Botero

. January 19, 2011 . 0 Comments

The Baroque World of Fernando Botero comes to the Toledo Museum of Art March 19–June 12, 2011. Toledo is the final stop and the only venue in the Midwest where the exhibition is being shown.

Organized by Art Services International of Alexandria, Va., the exhibition opened in January 2007 in Canada at the Musée National des Beaux–Arts du Québec and has since been displayed at 11 other U.S. museums, mostly in the South.

Fernando BoteroColombian artist Fernando Botero, born 1932, works in a broad range of media as he depicts the comedy of human life, whether moving or wry. Inspired by artists of the Baroque movement of the 17th century, Botero creates immediately recognizable figures that are at once accessible yet enigmatic, a blend of violence and beauty. His popular appeal has been evident around the globe when exhibits of his work have been seen in Athens, Berlin, New York, Paris, Venice and Seoul .

Visitors to TMA can investigate for themselves the complexity of Botero’s artistry by viewing some of his most well-known works as well as those lesser known. One hundred paintings, sculptures and drawings from Botero’s personal collection assembled over the past 50 years will be on view. Selected by John Sillevis, curator of the Gemeentemuseum, The Hague, the works include favorites that Botero was unable to part with as well as pieces he reacquired years after they originally left his possession.

The exhibition contains some of the best works from various stages in Botero’s development as an artist. There also are occasional “flashbacks” to his early works in the 1950s. Botero’s extensive studies of the history of European and Mexican art are clearly evident. And, while most of his time as an artist has been spent outside his native Colombia, Botero has maintained a link to Latin American Baroque imagery in all of his works.

His superb craftsmanship may be most evident in his drawings, especially his pastels, which often are compared to early etchings by Pablo Picasso.

Also of note are Botero’s massive bronze and marble sculptures, a seminal element in his oeuvre. The monumental, voluptuous figures transform their surroundings into a world of fantasy that is uniquely his.

A fully illustrated, full-color catalog published by Art Services International accompanies the exhibition and will be available for purchase in the Museum Store. In addition to an introduction by Sillevis, the catalog contains scholarly essays, a biography of the artist, a list of his work in public collections, a list of his solo exhibitions and a select bibliography.

Admission to the exhibition is free for TMA members and children under 6 years of age. Admission for nonmembers is $15 for adults, $12 for seniors ages 65 and over, and $5 for students ages 6 to 22. Reduced rates are available for student and other groups. Tickets can be purchased online beginning one month before the exhibition opening. There is a $1 handling charge for tickets purchased online.

The exhibition is circulated by Art Services International, Alexandria, Va. Her Excellency, Carolina Barco, Colombia Ambassador to the United States, is honorary patron of the exhibition.

Admission to the Museum is free. The showing of The Baroque World of Fernando Botero is made possible through the generosity of members of the Toledo Museum of Art. The exhibition also is supported in part through the sustainable grant program of the Ohio Arts Council, which encourages economic growth, educational excellence and cultural enrichment for all Ohioans.

Image: Fernando Botero, “Venus”, 2005. Oil on canvas, 67 1/2 x 50 1/2 inches. Photo; Courtesy: David Benrimon Fine Art LLC

Category: Museum News

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