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Botero observes that many people compare his work to that of novelist Gabriel Garcia Marquez. Botero says this may be because both come from the same environment. The two men belong to the same generation, but Botero grew up near Medellin, while Marquez grew up on Colombia's Caribbean coast.
Famed Colombian painter/sculptor Fernando Botero turned 80 recently, with comemorations in Mexico, New York and, of course, Colombia. Among the more moderate but approachable exhibitions is the one on the wall of the Biblioteca Luis Angel Arango in Bogotá's La Candelaria neighborhood.
The exhibition includes photos of Botero throughout his life and insights into his philosophy, how he became an artist and even how he started creating voluminous figures.
A youthful Fernando Botero on the wall of the Luis Angel Arango library in La Candelaria in Bogotá.
Botero's father died when the future artist was still a boy, marking his childhood. Artist Botero has suggested that his voluminous images may represent father figures.
Botero says that once when painting a mandolin he happened to make its hole very small, giving the instrument a voluminous appearance. After that, he never looked back.
Botero, a life-long bullfighting fan, recalls that when he started painting he would sell his bullfighting images near the Plaza de Toros for sale. His first sale, for two pesos, gave him a great elation - but on his way him he lost the money.
An uncharacteristic Botero painting, about Colombia's violence.
Boteroo's son, Pedro, was killed at age 4 in an auto accident. The artist has said that this painting of him is his only work which he feels is perfect.
The Luis Angel Arango Library's south wall, across the street from the Botero Museum, carries a tribute to the artist.