Most Denverites know the 13’ voluptuously round sculptures, “Man” and “Woman,” at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts (DCPA), by Fernando Botero. Botero is considered the most famous Latin American artist, and Denver has two of his sculptures, continuously on display. And wait for this, Botero's 1969 "Man Going to Work" was the top lot in Christie's line-up for last Wednesday’s sale, with a pre-sale estimate of up to $1.8 million. Botero's painting shows a corpulent wife and baby waving off a man, while a man in the background looks over a garden framed by a volcano and mountains. That incredible amount for one painting makes me wonder the value of the sculptures at DCPA.
Axel Stein, Latin American art chief at Sotheby’s said, “During the first half of May there were practically $2 billion in sales at auction houses in New York of modern, impressionist, and contemporary art, something that seems to never have happened before… There is a contagion of optimism.”
Botero Sculpture Bidding
Botero paints and sculpts comically proportioned people, animals and plants that are caricatures and sometimes satires to Colombian society. The exaggerated forms are eye catching. “Man” and “Woman” have graced the courtyard of DPAC since 1998, but did you know that Botero is still alive today—80 years old, and one of the world’s most wealthiest artists. His work is in more than 50 museums and galleries in Europe, Asia, Middle East and the Americas.
Botero’s latest book was published this past April, and can be found on Amazon.
“This publication is comprised of more than 20 new pieces by Colombian painter, draftsman and sculptor Fernando Botero (born 1932), probably the best-known Latin American artist working today. The book, handsomely bound in linen with a tip-on reproduction of the painting "The Street," revisits the most iconic subjects of the artist's six-decade career, including examples of Botero's bullfighters, circus performers, imbibers, musicians, reclining couples and society women. In addition to his new works, the book also includes archival photographs of the artist as a child, at exhibitions and in his studio, as well as an interview conducted by the book's editors. In the interview, Botero discusses his august career and turning 80: "from the point of view of my energy to work, I feel like I'm 30 ... What makes me work like this is the curiosity of what my next painting will be, what I will find," Amazon.
Like many people, I sometimes want to touch the art the Denver Art Museum (DAM), but know that would get me thrown out, maybe right into Oldenburg’s dust pan. Does Claes Oldenburg’s, “Big Sweep,” symbolize what happens to patrons when they get out of order? You get swept out with the trash? I bet not, but if you would like to touch some mega millionaire’s artwork, i.e. Botero’s sculptures, you can do it at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts .