From November 23, 2023, to February 4, 2024, at the Museo della Permanente in Milan, visitors can explore “Botero: Via Crucis”, a series of sixty works – including oils and preparatory drawings – created by Fernando Botero between 2010 and 2011, sourced from the Museo de Antioquia. The exhibition, appearing as a sort of spiritual testament, delves into one of the lesser-known aspects of the Colombian artist, his relationship with sorrow, eternal, and religion.
As a draftsman, painter, and sculptor, Botero was one of the great masters of contemporaneity, aligning his work, characterized by sumptuous and ample volumes, with the tradition of Western painting. This alignment was achieved through tributes, reinventions, and references (particularly to Paolo Uccello, Peter Paul Rubens, Diego Velázquez, Paul Cézanne, and Pablo Picasso), as well as in terms of formal approach and engagement with certain themes.
“Via Crucis: The Passion of Christ” is a series composed of 27 oils and 33 works on paper that reveals the influence of his early childhood, steeped in Colombian culture rich in devotional images and deeply rooted religious practices. The soft and peaceful forms typical of his work are here traversed by the turmoil and tragedy of the Passion. In these works, the drama erupts, evoking a profound sense of piety.